(Add China statement, change deadline)
NEW DELHI, Sept. 5 (Reuters) – India and China said on Saturday that they had agreed to work to reduce tensions along their disputed border, following a meeting of defense ministers of the Asian giants with nuclear weapons.
Both sides deployed additional forces along the border crossing the western Himalayas after a clash in June, in which 20 Indian soldiers were killed in close combat. China has not released figures on its troop losses.
At the highest level of face-to-face political contacts between India and China since tensions first erupted along the border in May, Defense Ministers Rajnath Singh of India and the General Wei Fenghe of China met on Friday evening on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization meeting. in Moscow.
The two countries agreed that “neither side should take any further action which could either complicate the situation or make matters worse in the border areas,” India’s defense ministry said in a statement.
Wei said the two sides should promote peace and stability and work to ease the current tensions, China’s Defense Ministry said in a report on the meeting posted on its website.
He said, however, that the responsibility for the recent tensions fell “entirely to India”, adding that China was determined to safeguard its national sovereignty and territory.
China called on India to tighten control over its frontline forces, refrain from provocative action and “refrain from deliberately speaking and spreading negative information.”