India-China border situation at present ‘generally stable’: Chinese military reacts to PM Modi’s boundary row comments

The Chinese military on Thursday said the situation along the India-China border “at present” is “generally stable” and both sides have maintained “effective” communication to resolve the military standoff in eastern Ladakh.

Defence Ministry spokesman Senior Colonel Wu Qian was reacting to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent interview with Newsweek magazine in which he had expressed hope that through positive and constructive bilateral engagement at the diplomatic and military levels, India and China will be able to restore and sustain peace and tranquillity at their borders.

“At present, the situation in the border areas between China and India is generally stable,” Wu said.

“Both the sides have maintained effective communication through diplomatic and military channels had positive constructive dialogue and achieved positive progress,” he said while responding to a question on Modi’s remarks and also Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s reported comments that India will continue to have dialogue with China to resolve the standoff at the border areas.

Wu said that “both sides have agreed to reach a mutually acceptable solution as soon as possible” to resolve the standoff.

In his interview, Modi said that for India, the relationship with China is important and significant. “It is my belief that we need to urgently address the prolonged situation on our borders so that the abnormality in our bilateral interactions can be put behind us. Stable and peaceful relations between India and China are important for not just our two countries but the entire region and world,” he said.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning in her response to Modi’s interview on April 11 said sound and stable China-India relations serve the interests of both countries and are conducive to peace and development in the region and beyond.

Relations between India and China are frozen except for trade ever since the eastern Ladakh border standoff erupted on May 5, 2020, following a violent clash in the Pangong Tso (lake) area. The eastern Ladakh standoff has resulted in a freeze of bilateral ties on all fronts except trade.

The two sides have so far held 21 rounds of corps commanders-level talks to resolve the standoff.

According to the Chinese military, the two sides so far agreed to disengage from four points, namely the Galwan Valley, the Pangong Lake, Hot Springs, and Jianan Daban (Gogra).

India is pressing the PLA to disengage from the Depsang and Demchok areas, maintaining that there cannot be restoration of normalcy in its relations with China as long as the state of the borders remains abnormal.

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