New Delhi [India], December 18 (ANI): India and China on Friday agreed to continue to work towards ensuring complete disengagement in all friction points along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Western Sector at the earliest, the Ministry of External Affairs said.
This was agreed upon during the 20th meeting of the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China Border Affairs (WMCC) which was held today in virtual mode.
The Indian delegation was led by Joint Secretary (East Asia) from the Ministry of External Affairs Naveen Srivastava. The Director-General of the Department of Boundary & Oceanic Affairs of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Hong Liang, led the Chinese delegation.
According to the MEA, the two sides reviewed the developments along the LAC in the India-China border areas since the last round of the WMCC held on September 30.
Meanwhile, a readout from the Chinese Embassy said that the two sides had a "candid and in-depth exchange of views" on the situation along the Line of Actual Control.
According to the readout, the two sides "agreed to earnestly implement the five-point consensus reached between the foreign ministers of both countries" when they met at Moscow on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meeting in September.
It said the meeting "focused on the disengagement of front-line troops and take concrete measures to deal with the issues on the ground to further deescalate the border situation."
"The two sides spoke highly of the outcomes of the 8th round of Senior Commanders Meeting agreed to continue dialogue and consultation via diplomatic and military channels, hold the 9th round of Senior Commanders Meeting as soon as possible, properly deal with the outstanding issues on the ground, and jointly maintain peace and tranquillity in the border areas," the Chinese embassy readout said.
The Indian ministry said that the two sides noted that the 7th and 8th rounds of Senior Commanders meetings held on October 12 and November 6 respectively had in-depth discussions in this regard and that these discussions had also contributed to ensuring stability on the ground.
"The two sides agreed that based on the guidance provided by senior leaders and the agreements reached between the two Foreign Ministers and Special Representatives, they would continue to work towards ensuring complete disengagement in all friction points along the LAC in the Western Sector at the earliest," the statement read.
"Both sides agreed to maintain close consultations at the diplomatic and military level. They agreed that the next (9th) round of Senior Commanders meeting should be held at an early date so that both sides can work towards early and complete disengagement of troops along the LAC in accordance with the existing bilateral agreements and protocols, and fully restore peace and tranquility," it added.
India has been engaged in a military standoff with China in the Eastern Ladakh sector where the Chinese side has transgressed at multiple locations and attempted to change the status quo on the LAC. (ANI)