At the end of 16 long hours of talks at the Corps Commanders Level Meeting, both sides have agreed to work on further disengagement in the Ladakh sector. The talks according to a joint statement issued were constructive and were positive in nature and the both sides are keen to address the remaining issues along the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
According to a joint statement issued late Sunday evening (February 21, 2021):
During the Saturday Corps Commanders Level Meeting, both India and China The two sides positively evaluated the smooth completion of disengagement of frontline troops in the Pangong Lake area. They also noted that this disengagement process was a forward step and will help in finding resolution for the remaining issues along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Western Sector.
At the end of the in-depth exchange of views on other issues along the LAC in the Western Sector, “India and China agreed to push for a mutually acceptable resolution of the remaining issues in a steady and orderly manner,” the statement added.
The 10th round of India-China Corps Commanders Level Meeting, took place on Saturday (February 20, 2021) on the Chinese side of the Chinese side of the Moldo/Chushul border meeting point.
“The two sides agreed to follow the consensus of their state leaders and to continue their communications and dialogue and to stabilize the situation on the ground. And, also to maintain peace and tranquility in the border areas,” the statement stated.
What was discussed during talks?
Disengaging in Gogra, Hot Springs, Demchok was very important, and to also stop blocking of Indian patrols in the Depsang Plains. This was conveyed to the Chinese side by the 14 Corps Commander Lt Gen PGK Menon who had led the India side during the Corps Commanders level on Saturday.
During the talks, the disengagement in the south and north banks of Pangong Tso Lake including Kailash Range earlier in the week was reviewed. The process was completed late Wednesday and 48 hours later as was agreed by both sides, the next round of talks took place. Both armies have withdrawn their soldiers, heavy armoured elements as well as mechanized columns.
The two sides are now working out an understanding on the disengagement process to be rolled out in the Gogra and Hot Spring area. These are the friction spots where the armies of both countries remain in a stand-off.
During the meeting the issue of Depsang Plains and Demchok was also discussed, though the discussions were positive, there has been no understanding reached on these two areas.
Based on the Joint Statement, the two sides will be getting back to their local commanders as well as high authorities. They will update them on the talks at the Corps Commanders Level.
According to reports, Demchok which is also a friction area was raised at the meeting along with — Depsang, Gogra and Hot Springs.
Because there has been a minor transgression and the Chinese have set up their tents. This area is disputed.
As has been reported by Financial Express Online, in the Depsang Plains, the Chinese PLA has been blocking Indian patrol teams from accessing Patrol Points (PP) 10, 11, 11A, 12 and 13.
And now the Indian soldiers who are patrolling have to cross the area on foot called `Bottle Neck’ as it’s not a motorable area.