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    S. Jaishankar on China: Situation in Ladakh ‘very serious’, need ‘very deep conversation’

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    Ahead of his expected talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Moscow, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said the situation in eastern Ladakh is “very serious” and said it calls for “very very deep conversation” between the two sides at a political level.

    The external affairs minister also said the state of the border with China cannot be de-linked from the state of the overall relationship with the neighbouring country.

    “The state of the border cannot be de-linked from the state of the relationship. I wrote it before that unfortunate incident happened in Galwan,” Jaishankar said referring to his newly published book ‘The India Way’.

    Tensions escalated manifold along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh after the Galwan Valley clashes on June 15 in which 20 Indian Army personnel were killed. The Chinese side also suffered casualties but it is yet to give out the details.

    According to an American intelligence report, the number of casualties on the Chinese side was 35.

    Jaishankar is set to meet Wang on September 10 in Moscow on the sidelines of the meeting of the foreign ministers of the eight-nation Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).

    He, however, said the broad principle around which his position would be constructed would be about the importance of maintaining peace and tranquility along the border for the overall development of ties which has been reflected in the last 30 years of the relationship.

    The minister also talked about the number of pacts between the two countries on the border management since 1993, saying they clearly stipulate keeping forces at a minimum level along the border and largely shaped the behaviour of the armed forces.

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