Beijing: National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon will hold talks with his counterpart in China in Beijing on Friday on the disputed border issue. Menon, who is the designated Special Representative (SRs) and his newly appointed counterpart Yang Jiechi, will hold talks amid recent assertions by both sides to seek an early solution.
This is the 16th round of the border dialogue but the first since the face off with Chinese troops in eastern Ladakh in April.
Sources said that apart from reviewing progress in the dialogue, the Chinese are expected to press for an early decision by India on the border defence cooperation agreement.
Besides holding talks with Yang, Menon will be meeting Chinese Premier Li Keqiang during his two-day visit besides Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said. Li had visited India last month making his first visit abroad as well as Foreign Minister, "We recognise that the boundary question as an issue between the two countries. We are looking forward to finding a solution that is mutually acceptable to both sides", Hua said
replying to a question whether the two sides would like to speed up the process to find a solution. But the boundary question is an issue left over from history (and) it cannot be solved overnight, but you should see that two sides have made long lasting efforts in order to
solve the issue and a lot of achievements have already been made", she said.
She said both sides "reached preliminary consensus on the framework of the resolution. We would like to work together with Indian side based on consensus that has been reached between two sides to find an equitable and mutually acceptable solution pending final settlement of boundary question. "We should work together to maintain peace and tranquillity of border areas and ensure boundary issue does not affect overall relations between China and India".
Friday's meeting is expected to focus on recent intrusion by Chinese forces in India's Depsang Valley. The meeting would pick up the threads from the last round of talks held in December last year during which Menon and the previous long standing Chinese negotiator, Dai Bingguo reached a "common understanding" on the progress made during the last 15 rounds.
With Additional Inputs from PTI