With President Xi Jinping formally taking over the reins of power in China, India is going to kick-start its bilateral engagement with an official level counter terrorism dialogue next month. The talks will focus on pan-Islamic extremism from Af-Pak region after the US pullout from Kabul in 2014 and cyber security.
While Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will meet President Xi for the first time on the sidelines of the March 27, BRICS summit in Durban, the meeting may result in finalising Singh’s visit to Beijing later this June.
Top government sources said additional secretary (counter- terrorism) Navtej Sarna will be in Beijing to meet his director general counterpart in Chinese foreign ministry Qui Guohong for a dialogue scheduled on April 10-12, 2013. Both sides will also have representatives of intelligence agencies. While National Security Advisor Shiv Shanker Menon is also scheduled to go to Beijing to re-start the Special Representative level Boundary Dialogue, it is still not clear whether Yang Jiechi — appointed in place of Dai Binggou — will get the charge to handle the border dispute.
Official sources said while India will share its threat assessment from Pakistan-based terrorist groups, Beijing will brief the Indian official on the separatist East Turkestan Islamic Movement in Muslim Uighur-dominated Xinjiang province.
Both India and China are worried that US and other western powers will cut deals with Afghan Taliban — including giving control of some territories around Kandahar — for a smooth exit in 2014. The Indian assessment is that Pakistan-based terror groups have already moved across the Durand Line into Kunar and Nuristan provinces and after the pullout there will be jihadist pressure on Wakhan corridor leading to Xinjiang province.