India-China border talks next week


A Tibetan woman attends a candlelight vigil in memory of the self immolations in Tibet during the eighth day of the Kalachakra Festival in Bodhgaya on January 8, 2012.



India-China border talks that were scuttled because of a dispute over the Dalai Lama in November will be held next week, the Times of India reports.

Both Beijing and New Delhi apparently hope to temper the adversarial tone of recent exchanges, the paper said.

Dai Bingguo, China's special representative, will be in Delhi next week for another round of boundary talks with national security adviser Shivshankar Menon.

Little progress is expected on the border dispute, which relates to the boundaries of the Indian states of Arunachal Pradesh and Kashmir. But the meeting is significant because it could lay the groundwork for a visit by Chinese Vice-President Xi Jinping, whom observers expect will succeed Hu Jintao as the general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in 2012 and as China's president in 2013.

On Sunday, in a rare gesture, Liu Zhenmin, an assistant foreign minister of China, said it would push for faster development of ties with India in 2012. In an interview to Xinhua, China's official news agency, Liu said, "China is willing to make joint efforts with India to continuously implement the important consensus reached between leaders of the two countries, maintain high-level exchanges, enhance strategic mutual trust, deepen mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields and properly handle issues concerning the bilateral relationship."

Signs of a thaw?