Engaged with China: MEA on Donald Trump’s offer to mediate to resolve border row

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Thursday said that it is already ”engaged with China for amicable and peaceful resolution of the border dispute between the two countries.” 

The MEA further stated that the Indian troops were strictly following procedures laid out in bilateral pacts with China to resolve the issue. ”Our troops have taken very responsible approach towards border management,” the MEA said on the present stand-off between the Indian and Chinese troops in Ladakh.

The External Affairs Ministry maintained that ”we remain strong in our resolve to ensure India’s sovereignty.”

The comments from the MEA came in response to the United States President Donald Trump’s latest offer to media to resolve the border dispute between India and China.

It may be recalled that Trump had on Wednesday (May 27) expressed his willingness to mediate between India and China to resolve their border dispute. He took to social media to convey this message.

President Trump tweeted, “We have informed both India and China that the United States is ready, willing and able to mediate or arbitrate their now raging border dispute. Thank you!”

Previously also, President Trump had offered to mediate between India and Pakistan on the Kashmir issue. However, the proposal was rejected by New Delhi as it maintained that ‘’there is no role for any third party in bilateral issues.’’

Notably, several areas along the LAC in Ladakh and North Sikkim have recently witnessed military build-up by both the Indian and Chinese armies. The tension has escalated on both two sides after they were engaged in two separate face-offs. 

The Chinese side has been peeved with India laying a key road in the finger area of Pangong Tso Lake region besides another road connecting the Darbuk-Shayok-Daulat Beg Oldie road in Galwan Valley. 

The situation in eastern Ladakh deteriorated after around 250 Chinese and Indian soldiers were reportedly engaged in a violent face-off on May 5 evening that spilled over to the next day before the two sides agreed to “disengage” following a meeting at the level of local commanders.

The incident took place as China strongly objected to the road being laid by India in the Finger area in Pangong Tso lake. The Pangong Tso incident was followed by a similar incident in North Sikkim on May 9. The nearly 3,500-km-long Line of Actual Control (LAC) is the de-facto border between India and China.

However, China on Wednesday took an apparently conciliatory tone by stating that the situation at the border with India is “overall stable and controllable,” and both the countries have proper mechanisms and communication channels to resolve the issues through dialogue and consultation.

The Ministry of External Affairs stated that all Indian activities were carried out on its side of the border, asserting that India has always taken a very responsible approach towards border management.

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