NEW DELHI: India and China have “unimpeded" communication channels to resolve the issues through dialogue, a Chinese foreign ministry official said on Monday, reiterating that the situation at the border was "stable and controllable."
Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian responding to comments made by Indian defence Rajnath Singh over the weekend said: “China has been implementing the consensus between the two countries' leaders. We have been committed to upholding our national sovereignty, security as well as stability along the border."
"Now the overall situation in our border areas is stable and controllable. We have unimpeded communication channels and we hope and believe through dialogue and consultations we can properly resolve the relevant issue," Zhao said in comments that were similar to what he had said last week.
They come as Indian and Chinese soldiers were facing off against each other in several locations in Ladakh along the Line of Actual Control (LAC). The faceoff entered in fourth week on Monday, in what is turning out to be the biggest confrontation between the two countries after the Doklam episode in 2017.
Meanwhile, talks to defuse the situation were continuing between the militaries and diplomats of the two countries. The main areas of tension were at the Pangong Tso Lake, Galwan Valley, Demchok and Daulat Beg Oldie in eastern Ladakh.
India-China border problems date back to 1962 when the two countries fought a short but bitter war that ended badly for India. The two countries have not delineated the border on the map which means that troops on both sides accuse the other of making incursions into their territory. This time round, at at least one of the places, Chinese troops have entered into what was previously accepted as Indian territory. What is also different say analysts is the presence of Chinese troops in larger numbers than before.
In his comments on Saturday, Indian defence minister Singh had said that the Modi government would not let India’s "pride be hurt" but is determined to settle the dispute through talks between the giant neighbours. "Negotiations are ongoing between the two countries at the military and diplomatic levels," he said.
PTI contributed to this report