India, China hold 15th round of military talks to resolve eastern Ladakh row

New Delhi, Mar 11: India and China on Friday are holding another round of high-level military dialogue to resolve the 22-month-long standoff in some friction points in eastern Ladakh, two months after the last round of such talks failed to yield any significant outcome.

The 15th round of Corps-Commander level talks was scheduled to begin at 10 am at the Chushul-Moldo border point on the Indian side of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh, people familiar with the dialogue said.

The main focus of the talks is expected to be the completion of the stalled disengagement process in the Hot Springs (Patrolling Point-15) areas.

The Indian delegation at the talks is being led by Lt Gen Anindya Sengupta, the newly-appointed Commander of the Leh-based 14 Corps.

The Indian side is also expected to insist on disengagement as soon as possible in all the remaining friction points including resolution of issues in Depsang Bulge and Demchok.

The 14th round of talks had taken place on January 12 and did not result in any significant headway in resolving the row in remaining friction points.

“The two sides agreed to stay in close contact and maintain dialogue via military and diplomatic channels and work out a mutually acceptable resolution of the remaining issues at the earliest,” a joint statement issued after the 14th round of talks said.

The eastern Ladakh border standoff between the Indian and Chinese militaries erupted on May 5, 2020, following a violent clash in the Pangong lake areas.

Both sides gradually enhanced their deployment by rushing in tens of thousands of soldiers as well as heavy weaponry.

As a result of a series of military and diplomatic talks, the two sides completed the disengagement process last year in the north and south banks of the Pangong lake and in the Gogra area.

Each side currently has around 50,000 to 60,000 troops along the LAC in the sensitive sector.–(PTI)