Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Friday cleared New Delhi’s stand over disengagement between Indian and Chinese troops in eastern Ladakh saying that the situation along Line of Actually Control (LAC) is due to the actions taken by the Chinese side. Speaking at a weekly media briefing, MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said that China’s People Liberation Army (PLA) has attempted to effect a unilateral change in status along Ladakh LAC.
“The situation that we have seen since the last six months has been a result of the actions of the Chinese side which has sought to effect a unilateral change in status along the Line of LAC in eastern Ladakh,” MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava told the media.
“These actions are in violation of the bilateral agreements and protocol on ensuring peace and tranquillity along the LAC in the India-China border areas,” MEA spokesperson said adding that both sides need to strictly follow the various bilateral agreements and protocols in their entirety, including the 1993 and 1996 agreements.
“We have taken note of the Chinese side’s statement that it observes ‘strictly the agreements between the two sides and is committed to resolving the border issue through dialogue and safeguarding peace and tranquillity’ in the border areas. We expect that the Chinese side will match its words with actions,” responding to questions about the military standoff between the Indian Army and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), the MEA spokesperson said.
“It is our expectation that the further discussions will help both sides to achieve an agreement on a mutually acceptable solution for ensuring complete disengagement in all friction points along the LAC in the Western sector and full restoration of peace and tranquillity as early as possible,” Srivastava told the media.
On being asked about a tweet by Chinese embassy suggesting that the joint release of commemorative stamps was cancelled as no feedback given was by the Indian side before the launch time, Srivastava claimed it “factually incorrect”.
According to MEA spokesperson, in 2019, to mark the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between both the countries, China agreed to take part in a joint release of commemorative stamps but the anniversary celebrations itself has not taken place yet, and therefore, the issue of going ahead with joint activities under its ambit does not rise.
The Indian and the Chinese army have been locked in a serious border standoff in Easter Ladakh that started in May earlier this year following the situation both the sides held multiple rounds of military and diplomatic talks. However, no breakthrough has been achieved yet.
India, wants the disengagement to kick off from the north bank of Pangong Tso, where the PLA has occupied the 8-km stretch from ‘Finger 4 to 8’ (mountainous spurs) since early-May.
Meanwhile, China is adamant about the proposed disengagement beginning from the south bank of Pangong Tso-Chushul area, where Indian troops are in tactically-advantageous positions since August.