‘Large’ Chinese Military Presence at Border Hampers Bilateral Ties, Says Indian Foreign Minister

India and China have been in a military stand-off for almost a year and it is the deadliest conflict between the two Asian powerhouses since the 1962 border war. New Delhi says that any significant cooperation with Beijing on fighting COVID-19 can only take place once the dispute has been resolved.

India’s foreign minister, Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, said on Wednesday that there can be no meaningful cooperation between China and India until Beijing removes its troops from the Indian border and commits itself to “de-escalating” the Ladakh border dispute.

“The relationship right now is going through a very difficult phase because – in violation of agreements and understanding of many, many years – the Chinese have deployed a very large part of their military on, and close to, the Line of Actual Control, without any explanation,” Jaishankar said during a discussion organised by London-based publication company India Inc.

The Indian foreign minister is in the United Kingdom for the G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting.

“We have been very clear with the Chinese that peace and tranquility in the border areas is absolutely essential for the development of our relations,” said Jaishankar, when asked to comment on the present state of Indo-Chinese relations as well as cooperation between the two Asian powerhouses in tackling COVID-19.

“And that’s a position which we have consistently held in our discussions with the Chinese,” he pointed out.

Jaishankar revealed that…

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