Against the backdrop of growing tensions in the South China Sea, Chinese naval forays into the Indian Ocean and the American pivot towards Asia, India and China have held their first consultation on disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control in Beijing, widely seen as a trust-building exercise between the two Asian giants.
In the run up to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Beijing in May, Amandeep Singh Gill, Joint Secretary Disarmament and International Affairs of the External Affairs Ministry, met Wang Qun, Director General of the Arms Control Department of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and experts on disarmament from the China Arms Control and Disarmament Association (CACDA), a Chinese think tank.
“Discussions were cordial and substantive and covered all current items on the international disarmament and non- proliferation agenda, including export controls,” said the Indian embassy in Beijing.
During the talks on April 18, both sides underlined the importance of constant bilateral dialogue in order to further diversify the existing multifaceted relationship and decided to continue their fruitful discussions at the next round of meetings.
The two Asian giants, often painted as rivals, have had a plethora of political, diplomatic, and military engagements over the past year.
Earlier in April, the seventh Annual Defence and Security Dialogue (ADSD), a platform for the engagement between the defence ministries of the two countries, saw the two sides assess the regional security situation and discuss more CBMs on the border issue
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