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China calls for timely settlement of border issues

By K J M Varma
May 08, 2013 17:32 IST
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China on Wednesday called for "proper and timely" settlement of the boundary issues with India to preserve peace at the borders in the light of the row over DepsangValley in Ladakh where the troops of People's Liberation Army intruded recently.

"Proper and timely settlement of border issues serves the common interests of both the countries and is also their common aspiration," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said replying to a question seeking details of the settlement of the fortnight long stand-off that ended on Sunday.

"The handling of the incidents also shows that the two countries agreed to protect the safety and security and peace of border areas and it is also the result of joint efforts," she said ahead of External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid's two-day visit of China starting on Thursday.

"We would like to continue to work with the Indian side to safeguard peace and stability of the border areas for sound and steady development of China and India relations," Hua told a media briefing in Beijing.

During his visit, Khurshid will hold talks with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi and would meet Premier Li Keqiang, who is gearing up to visit India later this month, making it the first stop of his maiden foreign tour after assuming the post in March.

Asked for details of Khurshid's visit, Hua said that he will hold talks with Wang and meet Chinese leaders but did not disclose which of the leaders he would be meeting.

Hoping that Khurshid's visit will push forward bilateral relatins, Hua also stressed the importance of the two sides to resolve the boundary issues in view of the DBO incident.

Khurshid's visit is seen as prelude to the visit of Li to India and the Chinese leader's programme was expected to come up for discussions during their meeting, officials said.  

According to earlier plans Li was due to visit Mumbai and New Delhi in the third week of this month after which he planned to visit Pakistan and Germany. There is no official announcement here yet on these visits.

It will be Li's first visit abroad as the Premier and the new Chinese leadership wants it to signify the importance it attaches to the bilateral relations with India.

However, it was overshadowed by the Chinese troops incursion into the Daulat Beig Oldi in Ladakh. It cast a shadow over Khurshid's visit until it was resolved three days ago.

About the DBO incident, Hua said, "we all know under the joint efforts of the two sides, competent authorities of the two countries have reached consensus on the incident occurred in the western section of the boundary and properly handled it."

China always believes that its relations with India are important as both are developing countries and emerging economies.

"The sound and steady development of bilateral relationship serves the common interests of both the countries and people and also contribute to Asian and World peace and prosperity," she said.

"Under the joint efforts of the two sides the two countries relations have made continuous progress with increasing political mutual trust and productive cooperation across the board as well as good cooperation and coordination in international and regional affairs," she said, adding China hopes that Khurshid’s will push forward bilateral relations.

Khurshid is also expected to call on State Councillor and former Chinese Foreign Minister, Yang Jiechi.

Yang has succeeded the long standing Chinese top diplomat Dai Bingguo who recently retired. He, however, has not yet been designated as Special Representative for India-China border talks, a position Dai held, even though speculation is rife that he would be formally named for the job.

Besides his meeting with Chinese leaders, Khurshid would also attend a reception at the Indian Embassy and meet various Indologists and Chinese cultural personalities

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K J M Varma in Beijing
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