India, China discuss border dispute

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Beijing, Jan 15 (UNI) National Security Adviser M K Narayanan and Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Dai Bingguo, the special representatives of India and China respectively for discussing the vexed border dispute between the two countries, today held talks and took stock of the developments on the issue.

The Special Representatives discussed the matter against the backdrop of a joint vision statement signed yesterday between the two countries to take their ties ahead.

They explored possibilities for expediting talks for finding a mutually agreeable solution of the long-pending border dispute.

The Representatives, who have already completed eleven rounds of talks over the issue, expressed satisfaction over the developments so far.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao have also expressed satisfaction on the progress of talks.

Asked about the reports that China was insisting on not leaving some populated areas from the purview of the talks on the issue, highly placed sources said perceptions on some areas in some sectors vary, but all aspects are being looked into.

During the Chinese premier's visit to India in April 2005, Special Representatives of the two countries had finalised the guiding principles to resolve the vexed boundary dispute in a mutually accepatble manner.

Sources said, lateral agreements on maintaining peace and tranquility on borders was being followed and more confidence building measures to promote mutual trust and confidence were being taken.

The two countries have also decided to conduct more joint military exercises. Recently, such an exercise was conducted at Kunming, China.

The India-China boundary issue is being dealt by a three-tier dialogue mechanism. Apart from the Special Representatives, the two sides have Joint Working Groups as well as an Expert Group to discuss the vexed issue.

UNI NB YA GC2356

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