New Delhi: India today made a renewed pitch for a "peaceful resolution" of the Dokalam standoff through diplomatic channels, stressing that "differences" should not become "disputes".
Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Gopal Baglay told reporters here that New Delhi has been in "close contact" with the Bhutan government on the unfolding developments. "India's approach is to have a peaceful resolution of issues on border with China," he said underlining the understanding In New Delhi, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said the matter can be resolved through talks. We are willing to talk, but both sides have to first take back their armies," she told the Rajya Sabha. The minister said the boundaries between India and China are yet to be finalised and the two countries will do that bilaterally through discussions, while the same between China and Bhutan too will be done through bilateral talks. She accused China of building roads using bulldozers and excavators, which has been protested by Bhutan in writing to China. Chinese and Indian soldiers have been locked in a face- off for over a month after Indian troops stopped the Chinese army from constructing a road near the Doklam plateau, fearing it may allow China to cut India's access to its northeastern states. India has conveyed to China that the construction of the road would represent a significant change of status quo with serious security implications for New Delhi. India and China share a 220-km-long border in Sikkim. Lu claimed that the incident makes it clear that "Indian border personnel illegally trespassed into China's territory." The standoff is expected to figure prominently during the visit of National Security Adviser Ajit Doval to Beijing for the meeting of NSAs from BRICS - Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa - countries from July 26-27.