Doval in Beijing for BRICS NSA meet, Doklam talks likely

27 July 2017

India's National Security Advisor Ajit Doval landed in Beijing on Wednesday to attend a meeting of security chiefs of BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) today. Doval is expected to hold talks with Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi on the ongoing Doklam standoff on the Sikkim border. Doval and Yang are special representatives of the India-China border mechanism.

As per the official programme, Doval will call on Chinese President Xi Jinping on Saturday along with fellow top security officials of the BRICS countries.

Chinese and Indian troops have been locked in a face-off in the Doklam tri-junction with Bhutan and China area (variously known as Doka La, or Donglang by the Chinese) for more than a month since Indian troops stopped the Chinese army from building a road in the area.

China claims that it was constructing the road within its territory. India protested the construction, fearing it would allow China to cut India's access to its northeastern states.

Ahead of Ajit Doval's visit, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang on Wednesday reiterated that no meaningful dialogue can be held with India until it "unconditionally" withdraws troops from the Doklam area.

Lu also said Foreign Minister Wang Yi has authoritatively made Beijing's position clear on the issue.

Though China continued to maintain that there won't be a meaningful dialogue without the withdrawal of Indian troops, the Chinese foreign ministry has hinted at a bilateral meeting between Doval and Yang, which is part of the tradition of BRICS NSAs' meeting.

About the BRICS NSAs' meeting, Lu told media, "The meeting on security issues is a major platform for BRICS countries to discuss and conduct cooperation in politics and security fields.

"It bears great significance for these countries to strengthen strategic communication, enhance political mutual trust and elevate their impact on global affairs."

He said that discussions will be held on topics including global governance, anti-terrorism, internet security and energy security, as well as major international and regional hotspot issues.

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