NEW DELHI: The meeting between External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Moscow is the first step in the right direction and gives guidance for disengagement amid the stand-off between Indian and PLA troops along the LAC, sources said on Friday.
The two leaders met on the sidelines of the SCO foreign ministers’ meeting and decided to adopt a five-point mechanism to resolve the tension.
Experts, too, say the tone of the joint statement issued after the meeting appeared to conciliatory.
“It appears the tone is conciliatory at this time, and both agreed that existing mechanisms and protocols must be adhered to. Both reiterating that channels of communication will remain open and that soon the special representative-level meeting will take place demonstrates that there is a silver lining as regards solving the stand-offs through diplomacy. This, ultimately, may pave the way for another Modi-Xi meeting that could be a face-saver to both sides,” BR Deepak, Sinologist and chairperson of the Centre for Chinese and South Asian Studies at JNU, said.
Russia-based political analyst Andrew Korybko said the development was unexpected by welcoming.
“It shows that, at least for the time being, neither party wants to further escalate tensions along the LAC. This proves that the problems are political, not military nor economic, since the foreign ministers are referring to their respective leaders’ guidance, which was formed through their interactions with one another during several high-profile meetings across the last six years,” he said.
However, they were divided on who must be cautious of the other.
While Deepak said both sides must walk the talk, Korybko felt Beijing needed to be cautious of New Delhi’s approach in implementing the five-point mechanism that was agreed upon.
“It would be important to see the results on the ground. The military exercises by the PLA, the usage of drones for logistics and the tone of the Chinese media points to something else, which I hope Indian forces and the government are taking note of. Undoubtedly, a peaceful settlement is a necessity, both sides must de-escalate the situation for the larger interest,” Deepak said.
Korybko believed that the successful implementation will depend on the political will of each leader (PM Modi and President Xi).