The 13th round of Corps Commander-level negotiations held in Moldo on Sunday failed to produce a breakthrough between India and China, contrary to projections. The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) group arrived with a “pre-determined mindset,” according to top sources because they were “aggressive” and “knew the outcome of the talks.”
In their respective comments, India and China both stated that there was no agreement on disengagement in the remaining areas of conflict. The hot springs, Demchok, and the very contentious Depsang plain are the three points of conflict. The conflict has been blamed on both sides.
The crisis on the LAC was triggered by “unilateral Chinese efforts to disrupt the status quo,” according to an Indian Army statement. While China stated that India should “celebrate a difficult win-win scenario in the China-India border areas,” India responded by saying that it should “cherish a tough win-win situation in the China-India border areas.” The Indian Army, on the other hand, stated that negotiations will continue between the two countries.
“During the discussion, the Indian side made constructive suggestions to fix the remaining areas,” the Indian Army memo continued, “but the Chinese side did not concur and could not make any forward-looking proposals.” As a result, the remaining issues were not addressed at the meeting.
According to sources, not just the hot springs were on the table, but also all of the friction spots, including Demchok and Depsang.
In a press release, the PLA Western Command described India’s demands as “unrealistic and outrageous,” adding to the complexity of negotiations.
For the past 17 months, there has been a standoff in eastern Ladakh. 50,000 to 60,000 Indian soldiers are likely to spend another severe winter in high altitudes, where temperatures will dip below minus 30 degrees.
In eastern Ladakh, Chinese infrastructure has been constructed on a vast scale. Permanent structures for domestic troops, helipads along the LAC, airport upgrades in front of India, road expansion, bridge construction, and increased boat strength at Pangong Tso are all on the table.
“If the Chinese are there to stay, then we are there to live,” Army Chief General MM Naravane stated, referring to the infrastructure being built.