By Gaurav Sharma
Beijing, Dec 14 (IANS) Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi will be on a four-day India visit from December 21 to attend the first people-to-people exchange agreed between Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi at their icebreaking meet in Wuhan earlier this year.
After witnessing chill in their ties over the military stand-off in Doklam last year, the two countries came closer later and pledged that bilateral ties would not be affected by a border dispute between them.
“At the invitation of India’s Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj, Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi will visit India from December 21 to December 24 and co-chair the first China-India people to people mechanism,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said.
The forum is the outcome of Modi-Xi meet at Chinese city Wuhan in April this year. The two countries stepped up their engagements after the Wuhan summit.
Wang is also likely to meet other leaders of the country given the current world situation, especially China’s trade war with the US. This will be the last high profile visit by the Chinese leader this year.
India and China have the world’s 9th longest border which is largely disputed. The two went to war in 1962 and have had military skirmishes since then.
Their latest and one of the most serious showdowns was last year at Doklam, a contested region between China and Bhutan close to India’s arterial highway where the Chinese were building a road.
Both sides are in talks to set up a military hotline to avert a Doklam-like crisis in the future.