Xi'an: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping today discussed ways to strengthen “trust” and maintain peace on border between India and China, whose ties are often soured by the decades-old boundary dispute.
Modi and Xi held substantive talks in this city, the first time a Chinese President has done so outside Beijing, covering various issues ranging from political, economic and global issues like terrorism, UNSC reforms and India's membership of Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).
“On the political side, there was a lot of discussion on strengthening trust and increasing convergence,” said Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar while briefing media on the 90-minute delegation-level talks without taking any questions.
He said the two leaders discussed the boundary issue, including peace and tranquility, besides trans-border rivers.
The boundary issue has been a sticking point in the relations between the two major Asian countries and both are making efforts to settle it through Special Representatives' talks. The Special Representatives have held 18 rounds of discussions so far.
China says the border dispute is confined only to 2,000 km mostly in Arunachal Pradesh whereas India asserts that the dispute covered the western side of the border spanning to about 4,000 km, especially the Aksai Chin area ceded to China by Pakistan.
Talking about the atmospherics at the meeting, the third between the two leaders in one year, Jaishankar said, “the atmosphere was very comfortable. So, in the sense it was building on the chemistry between the two of them which started last September.”
Xi'an is Xi's hometown, which Modi made the first stopover of his three-day trip, reciprocating the Chinese President's gesture of travelling to Modi's hometown Ahmedabad in September last year.