23rd round of Bhutan-China border talks held

Diplomacy: Bhutan and China held the 23rd round of border talks at the banquet hall in Thimphu, yesterday.
The outcome of the meeting is currently not known.
Foreign minister Damcho Dorji, who was leading the Bhutanese delegation, did not comment as an official press release was being prepared.
The Chinese delegation was led by foreign affairs vice minister, Liu Zhenmin. The two sides met for around four hours.
Two areas, one in the central and northern part of the country, and one in the western section have been the subject of talks between Bhutan and China. Border talks between the two countries began in 1984.
The 22nd round of talks held in Wutai Shan, Shanxi province in China in July last year endorsed the report of a joint technical field survey of the central northern sector of Bayul-Pasamlung. The joint technical field survey occurred in September 2013.
The disputed areas in Bayul-Pasamlung comprised of 496 sq km.
Prior to yesterday’s talks, two expert group meetings, one in Thimphu and the other in Beijing had also taken place.
In the western sector, it was reported by the Prime Minister in the State of the Nation report delivered to parliament in June, that the first phase of a joint technical field survey had also been completed.
The disputed areas in the western section are Dramana, Shakhatoe, Sinchulung, and Doklam, in the dzongkhags of Haa and Paro. The areas comprise of 269 sq km of disputed areas.
The Prime Minister had also reported that he had been personally visiting these areas.
The two countries have agreed to settle the border demarcation issue at the earliest.
The talks are based on the guiding principles agreed to in 1998 by the two countries and the agreement on the maintenance of peace and tranquillity in the Bhutan-China areas signed in 1998.
By Gyalsten K Dorji

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