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India, China to hold military talks

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India, China to hold military talks

India China military talks | Photo: CFP

Indian and Chinese representatives will hold the 15th round of military talks today.

This is the second meeting of the year after talks in January failed to resolve the two-year-long  standoff at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Ladakh region along the Sino-Indian border. Both countries continue to station troops and heavy artillery at checkpoints along the border, including at Depsang Plains, a key area of tension since 2013.

Although China recently expressed hopes for de-escalation along the LAC and the continuation of talks, neither side has agreed to a significant reduction in troops in the medium-term. Both sides have lost troops from violent clashes over the years, yet neither will opt for disengagement for fear of appearing weak.

Meanwhile, an agreement on troop reductions at Depsang Plains during last month’s talks did not produce any positive results on the ground, pointing to a maintenance of the current status quo in the long-term.

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Despite the conflict, Sino-Indian trade accounts for the highest percentage of inter-regional exchange in East Asia. However, even though an escalation of violence would seriously destabilize the region, both India and China see it as a small price to pay in face of security concerns.

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