India-China Defence Ministers Meeting

Context: The meeting between defence minister Rajnath Singh and his counterpart Li Shangfu saw both sides reiterating their positions, highlighting the persisting gap in the respective perceptions about what went wrong in Ladakh in 2020, its resolution, and how to move forward peacefully from there.

  • It was reiterated that development of relations between India and China is premised on prevalence of peace and tranquillity at the borders, all issues at the LAC need to be resolved in accordance with existing bilateral agreements and commitments and the violation of basic agreements has eroded the entire basis of bilateral relations.

On Border Dispute and its resolution:

  • Previously Indian and Chinese armies have conducted 18 rounds of military talks on ending the border row.
  • Though at the 16th round of military talks, the two sides carried out disengagement from Patrolling Point 15 in the Gogra-Hot springs area. 
  • The ties between the two countries nosedived significantly following the fierce clash in the Galwan Valley in June 2020 that marked the most serious military conflict between the two sides in decades. As a result of a series of military and diplomatic talks, the two sides completed the disengagement process on the north and south banks of the Pangong Lake and in the Gogra area. The eastern Ladakh border standoff erupted following a violent clash in the Pangong Lake area.
  • Recently China released a statement included a map that showed the 11 places renamed by China as being within “Zangnan”, or southern Tibet in Chinese, with Arunachal Pradesh included in southern Tibet and China’s border with India demarcated as just north of the Brahmaputra river.

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