China says progress made in latest border talks with India

A Chinese spokesperson says China and India have made progress in their latest talks on a long-running border dispute that turned deadly last month

BEIJING -- China and India made progress in their latest talks on a long-running border dispute that turned deadly last month, a Chinese spokesperson said Wednesday.

Top commanders from the two sides held their fourth round of talks on Tuesday, a month after the deadly clash between their soldiers in the Galwan Valley, where India is building a strategic road connecting the region to an airstrip close to China.

India says that 20 of its soldiers were killed in the June 15 clash and that there were casualties among the Chinese as well. China hasn’t confirmed any casualties on its side.

“The two sides have made positive progress on pushing forward the disengagement of the front-line troops on the western section of the border and easing the border tension,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said at a daily briefing on Wednesday.

Hua called for concrete actions by India to implement the consensus the two countries have reached and jointly safeguard peace and tranquility along the border.

There was no immediate comment by India's defense ministry or the army.

Last week, India's India’s external affairs minister, Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, said Indian and Chinese troops were disengaging from the standoff along the countries’ undemarcated border.

It’s very much a work in progress, Jaishankar said, adding that both sides agreed on the need to disengage because troops are deployed very close to each other.

The disputed border, known as the Line of Actual Control, covers about 3,500 kilometers (2,175 miles) of frontier and stretches from Ladakh in the north to the Indian state of Sikkim in the northeast.

India and China fought a border war in 1962 that also spilled into Ladakh. The two countries have been trying to settle their border dispute since the early 1990s, without success.