India, China agree to respect each other while resolving differences

India, China agree to respect each other while resolving differences

India, China agree to respect each other while resolving differences
With both sides keen  on bringing bilateral ties back on track, India and China have agreed to respect each other's sensitivity, concerns, interests and aspirations to resolve bilateral differences.

Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale visited Beijing on Friday and Saturday. He met his counterpart in the Chinese Government, Vice Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou, during his stay in Beijing.

He also called on Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and State Councillor Yang Jiechi.

Gokhale and Kong noted the need to build on the convergences between India and China and address differences on the basis of "mutual respect and sensitivity to each other's concerns, interests and aspirations", according to a press release issued by the Ministry of External Affairs on Saturday.

This was Gokhale's first visit to Beijing after taking over as Foreign Secretary last month, succeeding S Jaishankar.

He discussed with Kong, Wang and Yang "the agenda for bilateral engagement in the coming months".

The two sides also reviewed "recent developments in bilateral relations, including high-level exchanges", particularly during the visits of Chinese Foreign Minister and State Councillor to New Delhi in December 2017 -   a few months after the face-off in Doklam Plateau. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to attend the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation's summit which Chinese President Xi Jinping will host in Qingdao on the east coast of China in June this year.

Modi already visited China thrice since taking over office in May 2014.

If he attends the SCO summit in China in June this year, he is likely to have another bilateral meeting with Xi on its sideline.

The two leaders will also have opportunities to meet on the sideline of other multilateral events, which would be held in the third countries, like the G-20 summit in Argentina and the BRICS summit in South Africa, in the coming months.

New Delhi and Beijing on Saturday underlined that "sound development of relations between India and China", being the two major countries, was a factor of stability in the world today.

The two sides also exchanged views on regional and international issues of common interest, stated the MEA.

Modi may also invite Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on a visit to India this year.

The diplomats of both sides are also exploring the possibility of a visit by a senior leader of Chinese Government ahead of the or during the 3rd Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors of Asian Infrastructural Investment Bank (AIIB) at Mumbai on June 25 and 26.

New Delhi's troubled ties with Beijing worsened further in 2017. Beijing was upset about India's opposition to Belt-and-Road initiative of China as well as growing strategic convergence of India, US and Japan in Asia-Pacific.

New Delhi was disappointed by Beijing's persistent policy of shielding anti-India terrorists based in Pakistan from United Nations' sanctions.

The face-off between the Indian Army and Chinese People's Liberation Army in Doklam Plateau in western Bhutan from June 18 to August 28 brought the bilateral relations to a new low.

Gokhale, who was India's envoy to China,  during the face-off played a key role in ending it. 



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