China said on Thursday that it hopes “relevant people” in India will refrain from making “unconstructive comments”, a day after Chief of Army Staff Gen M M Naravane stated that threat in eastern Ladakh has “by no means reduced” and the Indian Army will continue to deal with the Chinese military in a “firm” and “resolute” manner.
In his press conference on Wednesday ahead of the Army Day on January 15, Gen Naravane also said that war or conflict is always an “instrument of last resort” but if it is thrust upon India, then the country will come out victorious.
His comments came on a day India and China held the 14th round of Corps Commander level talks to resolve the military standoff in eastern Ladakh.
Asked for his reaction to Gen Naravane’s comments, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told a media briefing here on Thursday that “now China and India have been in communication and dialogue through diplomatic and military channels to ease the border tension”.
“We hope relevant people on the Indian side will refrain from making unconstructive remarks,” he said in response to a question from the Western media.
About the Corps Commander-level talks, Wang said “regarding the 14th Commander level meeting, we will release information if there is any”.
However, sources in the security establishment in New Delhi said on Wednesday that India pressed for an early disengagement of troops in the remaining friction points in eastern Ladakh at the 14th round of military talks with China which took place at the Chushul-Moldo border point on the Chinese side of the Line of Actual.
The Indian side also insisted on disengagement as soon as possible in all the remaining friction points including resolution of issues in Depsang Bulge and Demchok.
The 13th round of talks had taken place on October 10 and they ended in a stalemate.
The eastern Ladakh border standoff between the Indian and Chinese militaries erupted on May 5, 2020, following a violent clash in the Pangong lake areas. Both sides gradually enhanced their deployment by rushing in tens of thousands of soldiers as well as heavy weaponry.
As a result of a series of military and diplomatic talks, the two sides completed the disengagement process last year in the north and south banks of the Pangong lake and in the Gogra area.
Each side currently has around 50,000 to 60,000 troops along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the sensitive sector.