New Delhi: India pressed for a complete withdrawal of Chinese armed forces from friction points in eastern Ladakh on Monday as the senior army commanders convened a sixth round of talks for 12 hours that focused on implementing a five-point bilateral agreement to ease the border standoff, as per government sources said.
The Corps commander-level talks began around 9 am in Moldo on the Chinese side of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh across India’s Chushul sector. The meeting went on till 9 pm, the sources said.
The Indian side is headed by Lt Gen Harinder Singh, the commander of the Leh-based 14 Corps of the Indian Army.
The team also comprised Lt Gen PGK Menon who is expected to succeed Singh as the commander of the 14 Corps next month, the sources said.
The Indian team insisted the withdrawal of troops by Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) to end the four and a half month Ladakh standoff. The agenda for the meeting was to chart a specific timeline for the execution the agreement.
The Indian commanders insisted on execution of the agreement that was finalized during the extensive meeting in Moscow on September 10 between External Affairs Minister, S Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on the sidelines of a Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) meet.
The agreement aimed at ending the Ladakh standoff which included measures like quick withdrawal of troops, avoiding action that could initiate tensions, sticking to agreements and protocols regarding border management and steps to restore peace along the LAC.
Meanwhile, Military sources said the Rafale jets have started carrying out sorties in areas of eastern Ladakh as part of measures to prepare for overall combat readiness so as to fight the “provocative actions” by Chinese troops in the past weeks.
Indian Army has made proper arrangements to maintain their troop and weapons movement in all areas in eastern Ladakh and in other sensitive sectors in the harsh winter months with temperature dropping upto minus 25 degree Celsius.