Xi Jinping appoints senior diplomat Xu Feihong as China’s new envoy to India

Mr. Xu will succeed Sun Weidong who completed his tenure in India in October 2022.

Updated - May 07, 2024 07:14 pm IST

Published - May 07, 2024 05:09 pm IST - Beijing

Senior diplomat Xu Feihong has been appointed as the new Chinese Ambassador to India on May 7, 2024.

Senior diplomat Xu Feihong has been appointed as the new Chinese Ambassador to India on May 7, 2024. | Photo Credit: PTI

Chinese President Xi Jinping has appointed senior diplomat Xu Feihong as the new Ambassador to India after an unusually long delay of 18 months amid frozen relations between the two countries over the eastern Ladakh military standoff.

While there is no official announcement in Beijing yet, the Chinese Foreign Ministry has confirmed to PTI that Mr. Xu, former Ambassador to Afghanistan and Romania, has been appointed as China’s new envoy in India.

Mr. Xu, 60, is expected to travel to New Delhi soon to take over his new posting.

He will succeed veteran Chinese diplomat Sun Weidong who completed his tenure in India in October 2022.

Mr. Sun, who was China's envoy to Pakistan before his India stint, is currently the Vice-Foreign Minister overseeing China's South Asia policy.

Mr. Xu’s appointment which coincides with the ongoing Lok Sabha elections comes amid protracted military and diplomatic negotiations between Beijing and New Delhi to resolve the prolonged military standoff.

Relations between the two countries were frozen except for trade ever since the eastern Ladakh border standoff erupted on May 5, 2020, following a violent clash in the Pangong Tso (lake) area. The eastern Ladakh standoff has resulted in a freeze of bilateral ties.

The two sides have so far held 21 rounds of corps commanders-level talks to resolve the standoff.

According to the Chinese military, the two sides so far agreed to disengage from four points, namely the Galwan Valley, the Pangong Lake, Hot Springs, and Jianan Daban (Gogra).

India is pressing the People's Liberation Army to disengage from the Depsang and Demchok areas, maintaining that there cannot be restoration of normalcy in its relations with China as long as the state of the borders remains abnormal.

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