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India, China to discuss border pinpricks

Saturday, 12 April 2014 - 8:55am IST | Place: New Delhi | Agency: dna

India and China are expected to discuss the issue of incursions and face-offs by PLA troops inside the Indian territory on the Line of Actual Control during DGMO-level talks between the two sides from April 22.

A Chinese delegation headed by People's Liberation Army's deputy chief of general staff (operations) Lt Gen Qi Jianguo will hold talks with his Indian counterpart director general military operations Lt Gen PR Kumar.

After the two countries signed the Border Defence Cooperation Agreement (BDCA), they had agreed to have a hotline between their DGMO-rank officers to resolve issues cropping up on the LAC during face-offs between the soldiers of the two sides, defence sources said.

The Chinese official would be accompanied by seven staff officers who will be part of the delegation-level talks on April 22, the sources said.

The Chinese delegation is scheduled to call on defence minister AK Antony on April 23.

Under the BDCA agreement signed in October last year during prime minister Manmohan Singh's Beijing visit, the two sides agreed not to use force in case of face-offs along the LAC and the Defence Ministry says that it has helped it in immediate resolution of issues there.

The issue of incursions by the Chinese troops had taken a serious turn when they entered the Daulat Beg Oldie area in April last year and left only after a three-week stand off.

The frequency of Chinese troops transgressing Indian territory in Chumar area in eastern Ladakh has also gone up in the recent past and they have vandalised equipment deployed along the borders by the Indian side.

"The talks would be covering various issues like defence exchanges, joint military exercises as well as steps to increase confidence building measures between the two forces in the light of the signing of the Border Defence Cooperation Agreement (BDCA) last year to avoid repetition of incursions by Chinese troops in the Depsang Valley in Ladakh region," said an officer.

In 2013, there were over 150 incidents of incursions and face-off between the two armies while patrolling. And in April 2013, a PLA platoon level patrol team had intruded 18km into Indian territory in DBO in Ladakh sector.

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