NEW DELHI: Premeditated and planned action by Chinese troops was directly responsible for the violence and casualties during the June 15
and this unprecedented development would have a serious impact on bilateral relations, foreign minister S
told his Chinese counterpart
on Wednesday even as tensions simmered along the border.
Protesting in the strongest terms, Jaishankar said the need of the hour was for China to reassess its actions and take corrective steps. The interaction, the Indian foreign ministry said, concluded by both sides agreeing that the overall situation be handled in a responsible manner and to work to implement the disengagement understanding of June 6 sincerely. “Neither side would take any action to escalate matters and instead, ensure peace and tranquillity as per bilateral agreements and protocols,” the MEA said.
The foreign ministers spoke on phone to defuse the situation in what was their first conversation since the start of the latest round of border strife early last month. It wasn’t immediately clear who initiated the phone call but Jaishankar emphasised that
had met regularly to implement the consensus (over disengagement) throughout the last week.
“While there was some progress, the Chinese side sought to erect a structure in Galwan Valley on our side of the LAC,” he said. This reflected the Chinese intent to change the facts on the ground.
Wang sought to portray China as the victim, asking Jaishankar, according to a Chinese readout, to ensure a probe into the conduct of Indian troops for “crossing” the LAC and to severely punish those responsible. He also asked India to not “misjudge” the situation or underestimate China’s “firm will” to safeguard its territorial sovereignty. The Chinese statement mentioned fierce physical clashes and casualties. According to China, the two sides agreed to deal fairly with the situation and to “cool down” the situation on the ground as soon as possible.
Jaishankar said the bid to alter facts on the ground was in violation of all Sino-Indian agreements to not change the status quo. India believes China has violated with its actions all five bilateral agreements and protocols signed by the two countries from 1993 to 2013 for border peace and tranquillity.
He recalled that at the meeting of senior military commanders on June 6, an agreement was reached on de-escalation and disengagement along the LAC and told Wang that troops on both sides should also abide by the bilateral agreements and protocols and they should strictly respect and observe the LAC and not take any unilateral action to alter it.
While the Indian statement was more matter-of-fact, there was some broader messaging by the Chinese as Wang underlined how the countries were emerging forces and how mutual respect and support was important for their long-term interests.
China also recalled the consensus reached by PM Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping, and mentioned the need to strengthen communication and coordination for dealing with the border situation. Wang also underscored the significance of special representative talks on the border issue for maintaining peace and tranquillity.