ID :
Fri, 09/19/2008 - 01:02
Auther :

India, China hold boundary talks

Beijing, Sep 18 (PTI) After a year-long hiatus, India and
China Thursday held a fresh round of boundary talks with
Beijing saying the two countries must maintain peace and
tranquility along the border to help in a speedy resolution of
the protracted problem.

"Both should maintain peace and tranquility in the border
area before the boundary issue is resolved," Chinese Vice
President Xi Jinping said during a meeting with India's
National Security Adviser M. K. Narayanan here at the ornate
Great Hall of the People.

Narayanan, who is heading the Indian delegation at the
talks, said New Delhi also hoped to realise the consensus by
the leaders of the two countries to settle the vexed boundary
issue at an early date.

The new round of boundary talks is being held amid
some tension in bilateral ties in the wake of attempts by
China to block a consensus on the India-specific waiver at the
N.S.G. meet in Vienna earlier this month.

Beijing's stand at the Nuclear Suppliers Group (N.S.G.)
came as a rude shock to New Delhi, which conveyed its
unhappiness to Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi during his
visit to New Delhi last week. China maintains it played a
positive role at the crucial N.S.G. meet.

Xi hoped the framework for the resolution of the
boundary issue will be "fair and reasonable" and worked out
through equal consultation and friendly dialogue and accepted
by both the countries.

Xi said the achievement made during the boundary
meeting would benefit both sides and increase the mutually
strategic trust, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

"The two sides should view the bilateral ties with
strategic and long-term perspective, and expand the common
ground and properly handle the disputes so as to push forward
the long-term and stable relations," the Chinese Vice
President told Narayanan, who is here to attend the 12th round
of India-China boundary talks.

Xi, who is tipped to succeed Chinese President Hu
Jintao in 2012, pledged China was committed to developing the
strategic and cooperative partnership of peace and prosperity
with India, stressing Sino-Indian friendly relations would
benefit both, Asia and the world as a whole.

Narayanan said India attached importance to ties with
China and would promote the relationship, the report said.

Earlier, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said the two
Special Representatives at their two-day meeting will continue
to discuss the framework for the resolution of the boundary

"The Special Representatives will continue to discuss
the framework for the boundary dispute," Foreign Ministry
spokesperson Jiang Yu told reporters.

During the meeting with Narayanan, Xi also recalled the
visit of UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi during the Beijing
Olympic opening ceremony in August and thanked India for its
support to make the premier sporting event a great success.

Xi also welcomed Narayanan and his delegation, which
included Indian Ambassador to China, Nirupama Rao.

Narayanan later reached the heavily-fortified Diaoyutai
State Guest House for the 12th round of boundary talks with
his Chinese counterpart, Dai Bingguo, who is State Councillor.

Narayanan and Dai, who have built a good rapport,
exchanged pleasantries before they went into serious business.

The two sides are expected to discuss the status of
Tawang, nestled among the mountains in Arunachal Pradesh which
has long been a serious bone of contention.

Narayanan had earlier said that the lingering dispute
over the Buddhist enclave of Tawang was preventing efforts by
the two countries to "cross the rubicon."

"Till that (the issue of Tawang) is settled whatever
else we may do, it is difficult to say we have crossed the
rubicon," Narayanan had said in an interview to Straits Times
of Singapore last month.

He said "when they (the Chinese) talk in terms of
movement forward, they keep arguing Tawang has always been a
part of Tibet, which is a matter of debate."

Unable to find a negotiated settlement through the
diplomatic channels, India and China appointed Special
Representatives in June 2003 to address the border issue from
a political perspective of the overall bilateral relations.

The latest round of talks comes after the two sides held
negotiations from September 24-26 last year in Beijing.

India says China is illegally occupying 43,180 sq kms
of Jammu and Kashmir including 5,180 sq km illegally ceded to
Beijing by Islamabad under the Sino-Pakistan boundary
agreement in 1963. On the other hand, China accuses India of
possessing some 90,000 sq km of Chinese territory, mostly in
Arunachal Pradesh.