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Army delegation on five-day trip to China for border talks

NEW DELHI: A high-level Indian military delegation led by Northern Army Commander Lt Gen Ranbir Singh is on a significant five day visit to China.The delegation is slated to hold talks with top generals of the People’s Liberation Army and visit military and civil establishments.

This is the second visit by a Commander of the Northern Command to China, the first being in 2015. The two countries recently concluded a Joint Military Exercise ‘Hand-in Hand 2019’ in India.The Army in its official press release said, “There has been a marked increase in mutual co-ordination between Armies of both the countries and a will to foster friendly relations between them.”

“The visit will serve as a milestone in cementing the ties between the two countries. This will achieve the twin aim of high level military co-operation and stabilizing the sensitive borders,” said an official.Besides Lt Gen Singh, the Indian delegation includes one Major General from the Eastern Command and two Colonels representing the forces along the entire 3,488-km front with China.

On the first day, Lt Gen Singh called on Gen Han Weiguo, Commander of PLA Ground Forces. They discussed issues with strategic ramifications, besides the regional security environment, joint training and measures to enhance peace and tranquility along the borders, the Army said.A visit to military establishments and units in Urumqui and Shanghai is also on the cards.

PLA’s western command in charge of India borders
The delegation will also visit China’s Western Theatre Command (in Chengdu) and will be meeting its Commander, General Zhao Zongqi. This Theatre is responsible for China’s defence along the Indian front. Generals Han Weiguo and Zhao Zonggi directly deal with forces operating against India. Meeting them will help understand the sensitivities on the ground and concerns of each other which often result in misunderstandings on the borders, said sources.