India and China on Wednesday agreed to hold a meeting soon between the senior commanders of their armies for an early disengagement along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), where the two countries are locked in a face-off since June this year.
New Delhi and Beijing held their 19th meeting of the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination (WMCC) on India-China border affairs on Wednesday.
Both sides agreed that the next, i.e., the seventh round of meeting of senior commanders should be held at an “early date so that both sides can work towards early and complete disengagement of the troops along the LAC in accordance with the existing bilateral agreements and protocols, and fully restore peace and tranquility”.
The Indian delegation was led by Joint Secretary (East Asia) of the Ministry of External Affairs. The Director General of the Boundary & Oceanic Department of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs led the Chinese delegation.
An official statement issued by the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi said that the two sides reviewed the current situation along the LAC and had “frank and detailed discussions on the developments since the last meeting of the WMCC on August 20”.
Both India and China attached importance to the meetings between the two Defence Ministers and the two Foreign Ministers held earlier this month. They also noted that the agreement between the two Foreign Ministers should be “sincerely implemented to ensure disengagement at all the friction points along the LAC”.
The two sides positively evaluated the outcome of the sixth senior commanders’ meeting held on September 21. They emphasised the need to implement the steps outlined in the joint press release issued after the last meeting of the senior commanders so as to avoid misunderstandings and to maintain stability on the ground, the statement said.
The representatives of both the sides said that there was a need to strengthen communication, especially between the ground commanders. Both sides agreed to continue to maintain close consultations at the diplomatic and military levels.