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India asks China to revert to status quo in Ladakh

Source : PTI
Last Updated: Tue, Apr 23, 2013 14:23 hrs
India, China hold 2nd flag meet over Ladakh incursion

India today asked China to revert to the status quo position in Daulat Beg Oldi (DBO) sector in Ladakh where troops of both countries were in a face-to-face situation after Chinese forces intruded nearly 10kms inside Indian territory eight days ago.

"We have asked the Chinese side to maintain the status quo in this sector (of the western border)," official spokesperson in the Ministry of External Affairs Syed Akbaruddin said, adding, "by this I mean the status quo prior to this incident."


He also added that "we see this as a face-to-face situation between border personnel of two sides due to differences on their alignment of Line of Actual Control".

The term "face-to-face" is not something that India has "conjured up", it is something that is referred to in 2005 Protocol for implementation of CBMs in military field in the LAC in India-China border areas, he said.

While referring to the relevant provision in the protocol, he said, under it "if the border personnel of the two sides come in a face-to-face situation due to differences on the alignment of the line of actual control or any other reason, they shall exercise self-restraint and take all necessary steps to avoid an escalation of the situation.

"Both sides shall also enter into immediate consultations through diplomatic and/or other available channels to review the situation and prevent any escalation of tension."

The Official Spokesperson's remarks came even as the local military commanders of India and China held a flag meeting today in a bid to resolve the situation arising out of the incursion. The meeting was held in Daulat Beg Oldi sector and was the second since the incursion. The first one was held on April 18.

Speaking about the steps taken by the government since the incident on April 15, the spokesperson said, India raised the issue with China last week immediately after the Chinese incursion came to light.

Apart from Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai summoning the Chinese Ambassador to South Block, Gautam Bambawale, Joint Secretary in MEA, who is heading the India-China joint working mechanism to deal with issues on the boundary from the Indian side, spoke to his counterpart in Beijing last week, emphasing on the need to resolve the issue.

The Chinese side said they will look into the issue and respond accordingly.

However, when contacted the Chinese Embassy in New Delhi reiterated the comments made by their Foreign Ministry spokesperson in Beijing yesterday.

Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying had said yesterday that "China's frontier troops have been abiding by the agreement between the two countries and abiding by the LAC agreed by the two countries.

"Our frontier troops have been patrolling on the China's side of LAC", Hua had said, adding, "Our troops are patrolling on the Chinese side of the LAC and have never trespassed the line".

Chinese intrusion motivated by trade interest: BJP

 Alleging that the recent intrusion by China in the eastern part of Ladakh was motivated by a "strong trade interest", BJP today said that the move was part of a "far reaching" Chinese game plan.

"If earlier the predominant motivation behind Chinese intrusion designs was to gain strategic advantage in the region, the recent intrusions are motivated primarily by a strong trade interest and are a part of a far reaching Chinese game plan with serious implications," BJP National Executive Member and Chief Spokesperson Dr Jitendra Singh told reporters here.

Singh warned that the latest intrusion by People's Liberation Army (PLA) in the Daulat Baig sector on April 15 should not be taken at its face value.

"Ladakh shares a 646 km border with China in the form of LAC and if China is able to trespass through Indian territory it will be able to gain easy and direct access to neighbouring countries like Tazakhistan and Afghanistan.

"China is a fast growing economy desperately looking for easily accessible gas resources to meet its requirements and is therefore looking for a possible route through Ladakh," he said.

A platoon-strength contingent of China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) came 10 km inside the Indian territory in Burthe in DBO sector, which is at an altitude of about 17,000 feet, on the night of April 15 and established a tented post there, according to highly placed sources.

Sino-India system exists to resolve incursion issue: Khurshid

 External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid today said India will take "whatever necessary action is required for the betterment of country" while maintaining that there were systems between India and China to resolve situation arising out of Chinese incursion in Daulat Beg Oldi (DBO) sector in Ladakh eight days ago.

"We have a system among us, in which regional commanders discuss in these flag meetings. We have been solving these problems. We will keep on solving," he told reporters outside Parliament.

He also said "whatever necessary action is required for the betterment of country, we will take".

Khurshid said both India and China have come a long way. and any incident which raises question on the comprehensive system in India and China for the development of relations is "not appropriate"

India had raised the issue with China last week immediately after the incident of Chinese incursion came to light.

Apart from Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai summoning the Chinese Ambassador to South Block, the Joint Secretary in MEA, who is heading the India-China joint working mechanism to deal with issues on the boundary from the Indian side, spoke to his counterpart in Beijing last week, emphasing on the need to resolve the issue.

A platoon-strength contingent of China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) came 10km inside the Indian territory in DBO sector, which is at an altitude of about 17,000 feet, on the night of April 15 and established a tented post there, according to highly placed sources.

Defence Minister A K Antony had said yesterday that India will take "every step" to protect its interests to resolve the situation arising out of the incursion.

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