India and China on Thursday opened a two-day dialogue on counterterrorism, an annual affair which, this year, is expected to touch upon the situation in Afghanistan, following the 2014 pullout of NATO forces, among other issues.
The Indian delegation in talks this week in Beijing is led by Additional Secretary in charge of counterterrorism in the Ministry of External Affairs, Navtej Sarna.
The talks, which have been held for over a decade now, are a routine affair. Considering China’s close “all-weather” relationship with Pakistan, Beijing has generally been reluctant to seriously engage with India on the elephant in the room, as it were, with regard to the question of counterterrorism cooperation.
While Chinese officials did not comment on this week’s dialogue, their delegation is expected to be led by Qiu Guohong, Director General of the Department of External Security Affairs in the Chinese Foreign Ministry.
Mr. Qiu served as the Chinese Ambassador in Nepal before taking up his post. In Nepal, his term coincided with a renewed push by China to clamp down on Tibetan groups.
The Department of External Security Affairs is tasked with reporting on external security issues, overseeing China’s foreign missions as well as administering foreign non-governmental organisations in China. The dialogue is also expected to deal with cyber security issues.