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EAM Dr. Jaishankar meets China's Foreign Minister, says ties with Beijing not normal amid border dispute

Source : India Today

EAM Dr. Jaishankar meets China's Foreign Minister, says ties with Beijing not normal amid border dispute
In this photo provided by Indian Foreign Minister S Jaishankar's Twitter handle, Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi greet the media before their meeting in New Delhi, Friday, March 25, 2022. (Photo: EAM S Jaishankar's Twitter handle via AP)

External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar on Friday, March 25, said that peace and tranquillity at the border areas with China have been disturbed and the relationship (with China at present) is not normal. “No, our relationship (with China at present) is not normal, given the presence of a large number of troops in contravention of the 1993-96 agreements. So, as long as there are very large deployments, the border situation is not normal”.

“We still have ongoing friction areas, and have made progress in resolving some friction areas including Pangong Tso. Our discussion today was how to take this forward. There have been 15 rounds of talks,” said EAM Jaishankar after holding talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in New Delhi. The meeting between both leaders lasted for about three hours. Jaishankar said that he and his Chinese counterpart addressed a broad and substantive agenda in an open and candid manner. 

“We discussed our bilateral relations that have been disturbed as a result of Chinese actions in April 2020,” added Jaishankar. 

The EAM said that the occasion provided an opportunity to exchange views on major international issues, including Afghanistan and Ukraine. 

“The current situation is a 'Work in Progress', obviously, at a slower pace than desirable. This needs to be taken forwards since completion of the disengagement (at LAC) is necessary for disengagement,” EAM Jaishankar said in a press conference held after delegation-level talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi.

Both the leaders also exchanged their views on international issues including Afghanistan and Ukraine. “As far as Afghanistan is concerned, India's policy is guided by UN Security Council Resolution 2593. On Ukraine, we discussed our respective approaches and perspectives but agreed that diplomacy and dialogue must be the priority”, said the EAM.

EAM Jaishankar also raised issues related with Indian students studying in China who haven't been allowed to return citing Covid restrictions. “We hope China will take a non-discriminatory approach since it involves future of many young people,” said Jaishankar. He also said that the Chinese Minister Wang Yi had assured him that he would speak to the relevant authorities on his return on this matter. 

The EAM also informed that there was no discussion on Indo-pacific and QUAD. However, both the leaders discussed China chairing BRICS. 

During the meeting, EAM Jaishankar also explained to his Chinese counterpart why India found his statement at OIC objectionable. 

Earlier, Wang Yi had raised the Kashmir issue in his speech at the OIC foreign ministers’ meeting held in Islamabad, Pakistan on Tuesday. India reacted sharply to his statement, asserting that the comments were uncalled for.

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