Special representatives of India and China Friday began two-day talks that will focus on devising a framework for a final settlement of their decades-old boundary dispute.
While the Indian delegation was headed by National Security Adviser M.K. Narayanan at the 13th round of boundary talks, the Chinese delegation was led by Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs Dai Bingguo.
Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao, a former ambassador to Beijing, and officials of the external affairs ministry and the prime minister's office (PMO) were also part of the Indian delegation.
Besides Dai, the Chinese delegation had Vice Foreign Minister Wu Dawei and officials of the defence ministry and department of boundary and ocean affairs.
The 13th rounds of talks are being held against the backdrop of China's renewed assertions over Arunachal Pradesh, India's northeastern state that is claimed in entirety by both countries.
The two special representatives are likely to focus on bridging the gap on the interpretation of political parameters and guiding principles finalised during Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao's visit to India in 2005.
The talks are aimed at arriving at a framework agreement for resolving the border question.
Ahead of the meeting, official sources here said the two sides were trying to expeditiously resolve the "complex" issue and are hoping for progress in the second phase of the three-stage process they agreed to six years ago. The discussions will also cover "regional and other issues of mutual interest"