Sino-Indian relations after the Wuhan summit

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) and Chinese President Xi Jinping shake hands in a museum in Wuhan, China
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) and Chinese President Xi Jinping have many more pressing concerns, so they held a meeting to ratchet down bilateral tensions (source: dpa)
  • The Wuhan summit reduced tensions between China and India
  • Both countries’ leaders have more urgent matters to deal with
  • The rivalry between the two will not diminish and confrontation will return

After a remarkably contentious year, India and China agreed last month to what can be described as a geopolitical truce. Chinese President Xi Jinping and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi held an “informal” summit, to use the official description, in Wuhan, China in late April. The two leaders were together for more than nine hours, had an agenda that lacked any concrete objectives and issued no joint statement. However, the meeting did inspire a lowering of the relationship’s temperature.

The Wuhan summit came after a year of confrontation between India and China over the Dalai Lama’s succession plans, President Xi’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) infrastructure project and a 72-day military standoff over a disputed plateau on the Sino-Bhutanese border.

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