Bhutan on Thursday announced that it has agreed on a “three-stage blueprint” to resolve the long-pending border dispute with China and India said it has taken cognizance of the development. A Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between Bhutan and China in this regard. India and China had a 73-day standoff in the Doklam region four years ago when China attempted to expand the road in the region. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said, “We have taken note of the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Bhutan and China today. We have come to know about it. He said that you are aware that Bhutan and China are having border talks with each other since 1984 and in the same way India is also having border talks with China. Earlier, Bhutan said in a statement that its Foreign Minister Lyonpo Tandi Dorji and China’s Assistant Foreign Minister Wu Xinghao signed a three-stage blueprint MoU to accelerate Bhutan-China border talks. The Foreign Ministry of Bhutan said that the MoU related to the three-phase blueprint will give impetus to the border talks. It is expected that this blueprint will be implemented in good spirit, understanding and inclusive spirit, which will lead the border talks to a successful conclusion acceptable to both sides, it said. It is worth noting that in the year 2017, when China tried to expand the road in the Doklam region, India had strongly opposed it. Due to this, there was a standoff between India and China for 73 days. Bhutan had said that the territory belonged to it and at that time India supported Bhutan’s claim.
[Attribution to NBT]