Beijing, July 28: National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Chinese State Councillor Yang Jiechi met on the sidelines of the BRICS meeting on Thursday. Both special representatives of the India-China border mechanism talked on what Beijing called major problems and regional issues. Doval, along with other heads of the delegations, will also call on Chinese President Xi Jinping today evening.
The Chinese foreign ministry, in a brief readout on Doval-Yang meeting, said Yang “elaborated China’s position on bilateral issues and major problems”, which is being seen as an apparent reference to the standoff in the Dokalam area.
China’s state-run Xinhua news agency also reported that Yang met separately with Doval and his other counterparts from South Africa and Brazil.
Though there were no direct references to the Sikkim standoff in the Xinhua report, it said the talks between Doval and Yang included bilateral relations, international and regional issues and multilateral affairs.
Though China had maintained that there won’t be a meaningful dialogue without the unconditional withdrawal of Indian troops, India has been maintaining that the unilateral action by China to build a road in the area was altering the status quo and had serious security implications for India.
India has also been pitching for diplomatic solution to resolve the standoff but sought simultaneous withdrawal of troops of both the sides from the tri-junction with Bhutan.
However, the Chinese official media has been carrying a blistering campaign accusing India of trespassing into the Chinese territory.
Doval arrived here yesterday to take part in the Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa (BRICS) NSAs meeting being hosted by Yang, who, like Doval, is the Special Representative for India-China boundary talks.
His visit has raised expectations about the likelihood of India and China finding a way-out of the over the month-long standoff.
While the media had no access to today’s meetings, it will be allowed to cover tomorrow’s joint meeting of the NSAs of the five-member bloc.
Indian and Chinese soldiers have been locked in a face-off at Doklam in Sikkim sector for over a month after Indian troops stopped the Chinese army from building a road in the disputed area. Presently, the Doklam Plateau is occupied by both the Chinese People's Liberation Army and the Indian Army soldiers.
Notably, China has been expanding its territory aggressively, encouraging population settlements in the disputed areas. It was reported that China had moved heavy military equipment into Tibet's mountain regions, a move that hints at China's threatening military posture.