China said on Friday that it had reached a “five-point consensus” with India regarding the situation on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) after talks between the foreign ministers of the two countries in Moscow but offered no further details.
A statement issued by China’s foreign ministry also cited foreign minister Wang Yi, who held a nearly two-hour meeting with his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar on the margins of a Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meet late on Thursday evening, as saying that differences between the two sides should be put “in a proper context vis-a-vis bilateral relations”.
“The two sides reached a five-point consensus regarding the current situation after a full, in-depth discussion,” the three-page statement said. It did not elaborate.
There was no official word on the meeting from India’s external affairs ministry.
Jaishankar and Wang met for the crucial talks in Moscow against the backdrop of a spike in tensions along the LAC after both countries amassed more troops in the Ladakh sector.
The two leaders were in the same room twice earlier in the day – first for a meeting of foreign ministers of the SCO and then for a luncheon meeting of the Russia-India-China (RIC) grouping – before they began their bilateral talks a little after 8 pm Indian time.
There have been face-offs between the two sides on the south bank of Pangong Lake after Chinese troops carried out what were described by New Delhi as provocative military movements to change the status quo during August 29-30. The latest face-off occurred on September 7, when Chinese soldiers fired in the air after they were dissuaded from closing in on an Indian forward position – the first time guns were used on the LAC since 1975.
Since then, both sides have further strengthened their military presence in the region by moving in additional troops, tanks and other weaponry. The Chinese side, however, has been rattled by India’s proactive move of positioning its troops on several strategic heights to prevent further land grabs on the south bank of Pangong Lake.