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PM Modi’s Bilateral Meetings At BRICS Finalized, Meet With Xi-Jinping In Doubt

The details of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s private discussions will take place in Johannesburg in conjunction with the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) conference, the foreign secretary Vinay Kwatra said on Monday. However, he avoided directly responding to the question of whether PM Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping might meet.

The first BRICS meeting to be held in person since the Covid-19 pandemic will be attended by Prime Minister Modi during his three-day trip to the South African metropolis.

When asked if PM Modi and President Xi will meet outside of the summit, Mr. Kwatra responded that the Prime Minister’s bilateral meeting itinerary was still being finalized.

If the meeting happens, it will be the two countries’ first since the border impasse between China and India started in May 2020.

At a dinner held during the G20 conference in Bali in November of last year, PM Modi and President Xi briefly interacted. Xi Jinping’s trip to South Africa to attend the summit has already been confirmed by China.

In the meantime, discussions between local Indian Army and Chinese PLA commanders over confidence-boosting measures in Depsang and Demchok, eastern Ladakh, proceeded.

Even though the two sides completed their disengagement in a number of locations after protracted diplomatic and military talks, the Indian and Chinese troops have been engaged in a three-year conflict in select flashpoints in eastern Ladakh.

On August 13 and 14, India and China convened the 19th round of Corps Commander-level negotiations with a focus on settling outstanding concerns at the Depsang and Demchok standoff areas.

The two sides have promised to swiftly settle the outstanding issues, and the negotiations were described as “positive, constructive, and in-depth” in a joint statement.

The local commanders of the two military held a series of consultations at two different places to settle difficulties in Depsang Plains and Demchok days following a new round of high-level talks.

The discussions at the Major General level that started on Friday mostly centered on steps to boost confidence.

The discussions with the local commanders were held on Monday and over the following few days to strengthen the confidence-building efforts.

There is, however, no official news about the talks.

At the Chushul-Moldo border crossing on the Indian side of the Line of Actual Control (LAC), the 19th round of communication between Corps Commanders took place there.

Ajit Doval, the national security adviser, and Wang Yi, the senior foreign minister of China, met on July 24 in Johannesburg at a BRICS summit.

According to the Ministry of External Affairs, Mr. Doval indicated that the LAC scenario since 2020 has “eroded strategic trust” and the relationship’s public and political foundation.

In order to remove obstacles to regular bilateral relations, the NSA emphasized the significance of ongoing efforts to properly settle the issue and restore peace and tranquillity in the border areas.

Alongside an East Asia Summit gathering in Jakarta last month, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar spoke with his Chinese counterpart.

India has insisted that peace in the border regions is a prerequisite for normalizing relations with China.

Following a bloody altercation near Pangong Lake on May 5, 2020, the eastern Ladakh border standoff broke out.

Following a violent skirmish in the Galwan Valley in June 2020, which was the most severe military conflict between the two sides in decades, relations between the two nations soured.

As a result of a series of military and diplomatic talks, the two sides completed the disengagement process in 2021 on the north and south banks of the Pangong Lake and in the Gogra area.

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