Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping met on Friday (9 June) on the sidelines of a key security summit in Astana, Kazakhstan, where the two leaders urged each other to iron out differences through dialogue. Their meeting came at a time when India has become an official member of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) security bloc, jointly led by Russia and China.
Ties between India and China are undergoing testing times as the two nations are seen sitting on either side of the fence on several political matters, ranging from global issues to border confrontations. This is Modi's first meeting with Xi in the past eight months and comes days after the Indian leader showed signs of reconciliation in his public remarks.
"I got the opportunity to meet you again during the SCO summit. I am grateful to you for your efforts and support for India's SCO membership. We spoke about India-China relations and how to further improve ties," said Modi after telling Xi that the two countries should "properly deal" with sensitive issues.
While calling for increased cooperation among the countries to fight the common enemy of "terrorism", Modi also said the nations should not infringe on others' sovereign territorial rights.
India had boycotted China's 'One Belt One Road' summit while Beijing has repeatedly blocked New Delhi's efforts in joining the elite Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) in the past months.
"China attaches great importance to its ties with India and stands ready to work with the Indian side to enhance political mutual trust, link their development strategies, deepen practical cooperation and maintain coordination and collaboration in international and regional affairs, so as to advance their strategic cooperative partnership in a sustained, healthy and stable way," the Chinese president said, according to the official Xinhua news agency.
Modi and Xi are expected to cross paths at least two more times this year when they meet at other global platforms.