The Centre on Sunday said that India and China, during the eighth round of Corps Commander-Level talks, had agreed to ensure that their troops exercise restraint and avoid any misunderstanding and miscalculation along the Line of Actual Control. The discussion, however, remained inconclusive.
The high-level meeting was held on Friday in Leh district’s Chushul village, amid border tensions between the two countries.
The Ministry of Defence said in a statement that there was a “candid, in-depth and constructive exchange of views” on disengagement along the Line of Actual Control.
“Both sides agreed to earnestly implement the important consensus reached by the leaders of the two countries, ensure their frontline troops to exercise restraint and avoid misunderstanding and miscalculation,” the ministry said.
The Centre added that India and China had also agreed to continue military and diplomatic talks to deescalate tensions.
“Both sides agreed to maintain dialogue and communication through military and diplomatic channels, and, taking forward the discussions at this meeting, push for the settlement of other outstanding issues, so as to jointly maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas. They also agreed to have another round of meeting soon.”— Ministry of Defence.
On Friday, Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat had said that the situation along the border continued to remain tense. He also admitted that the possibility of confrontations and unprovoked military actions spiralling into a larger conflict “cannot be discounted”.
The standoff along the Line of Actual Control in eastern Ladakh is in a stalemate since May, when Chinese troops moved to take control of the territory that had been patrolled by Indian soldiers for decades. The initial scuffles led up to a pitched battle – without firearms – in June that saw 20 Indian soldiers killed, with Beijing refusing to release casualty numbers on its side.
The sides have held several rounds of talks by military, diplomatic and political officials, including negotiations between their foreign ministers and defense ministers in Moscow last month. But the standoff has persisted, although no new military aggression has been reported for over a month now.