‘Avoid Unilaterally Changing Status Quo’: India Warns China

The emphasis on disengagement between the two sides came after Chinese provocation on 31 August.

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The Foreign Ministry on Thursday, 24 September, stated that the way to resolve the situation at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) is to try and take forward the disengagement process forward, and avoid unilaterally changing the status quo on the border, PTI reported.

Ministry of External Affairs Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said: “Even as two sides work towards complete disengagement in all friction areas, it is at the same time also necessary to ensure stability on the ground,” he said.

The emphasis on disengagement came after Chinese provocation on 31 August, that took place as ground commanders of the two sides were engaged in discussions to de-escalate the situation, NDTV reported.

The sixth Corps Commander-level meeting between India and China on the issue of Ladakh stand-off concluded on 21 September. The next day, both countries said in a joint statement that they have resolved to stop sending more troops to the frontline.

While responding to the queries of the media, the ministry said: “The way ahead will be to refrain from making any attempts to unilaterally change the status quo, while the two sides continue their discussions to achieve complete disengagement in all friction areas and to ensure full restoration of peace and tranquillity in the border areas.”

External Affairs Ministry (MEA) Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava on Thursday, 17 September, said both India and China should focus on easing tensions in the friction areas.

He said both countries should take forward the process for complete disengagement of troops from all friction points, including the Pangong lake.

"The Chinese side should sincerely work with the Indian side for complete disengagement at the earliest from all friction areas, including Pangong Lake as well as de-escalation in border areas in accordance with the bilateral agreements and protocols on the maintenance of peace and tranquillity in border areas," Srivastava said.

Last week, Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh made a statement in the Rajya Sabha on the India-China border tensions, saying that Chinese actions at the border reflect a disregard of various bilateral agreements between the two nations, such as the 1993 and 1996 agreements.

Singh said that while India’s armed forces abide scrupulously by the agreements, this has not been reciprocated by the Chinese side.

(With inputs from NDTV and Scroll)

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