New Delhi: Days after the violent stand-off between India and China at the Galwan Valley in Ladakh. India’s external affairs minister S Jaishankar will be meeting his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi, face-to-face, at the trilateral Russia, India, China (RIC) foreign ministers meeting, led by Moscow, on Tuesday afternoon.
India’s defence minister Rajnath Singh has also left for Russia to attend the Victory Day parade to be held on June 24. Moscow is emerging as a critical player in an attempt to melt the ice amid tension between New Delhi and Beijing.
Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov will be the third minister in the virtual meeting room likely to start in Moscow at 1.30 pm.
It is reported that Russia has ruled out any bilateral issues being taken up during the meeting but left the door open to “support trust building”.
The virtual meeting will help both the countries to lower tensions on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) where a meeting of senior army generals on Monday failed to provide a breakthrough.
Experts believe that Moscow has been more engaged with New Delhi over the past couple of weeks. This flows from the understanding that Russia has leverage over Beijing because of recent proximity, while New Delhi has had a history of robust bilateral ties with Moscow. During the Doklam crisis in 2017, Russian diplomats in Beijing were among the few briefed by the Chinese government.
Meanwhile, the Indian Army has made changes to its rules of engagement following the increased tension between India and China at eastern Ladakh on June 15. The new rule will now allow field commanders to allow army personnel to use firearms under “extraordinary” circumstances.
The situation in eastern Ladakh remains tense following the violent clash between Indian Army and Chinese troops that left Indian Army personnel martyred and Chinese soldiers dead. India has also returned Chinese soldiers who were captured during the clash when they crossed over to Indian side.