A de-escalation process in Galwan Valley escalated into a violent stand-off took on Monday evening. This saw an Indian Army Colonel (Commanding Officer of an infantry battalion) and two Army jawans killed in action during a clash with Chinese troops. Senior military officials from the two sides are now meeting in a desperate attempt to defuse the tension.
Sources close to the conflict claimed no gunfire took place but instead, the Indian soldiers could have been beaten, stoned and drowned to death in Pangong Tso lake in Ladakh.
The Indian Army said in a statement: “During the de-escalation process underway in the Galwan Valley, a violent face-off took place yesterday night with casualties.
“The loss of lives on the Indian side includes an officer and two soldiers.
“Senior military officials of the two sides are currently meeting at the venue to defuse the situation.”
Hundreds of soldiers have faced off in battle against each other in the remote snow desert of Ladakh since April in what is the most serious border conflict in several years.
This came after Chinese patrols advanced into the Indian side of the de facto border.
China and India appeared to make progress in talks last week, with Indian Army Chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane suggesting a dis-engagement was close.
On Saturday, he told reporters in Dehradun: “I would like to assure you that entire situation along our border with China is under control.
“Both sides disengaging in a phased manner starting from North in GRV where a lot of disengagement has taken place.”
High level talks between China and India for de-escalation in the Galwan region had taken place, with leading army commanders from both sides meeting in an attempt to reduce tensions.
The fifth round of talks took place despite the continued build-up of troops on both sides.
Last week, Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said: “Through diplomatic and military channels, China and India have recently had effective communication and reached agreement on properly handling the situation in the west section of the China-India boundary.
“At present, the two sides are taking actions in line with the agreement to ameliorate the border situation.”
The latest violence comes after weeks of tension, including an incident where Chinese and Indian patrolling soldiers faced-off on the banks of Pangong Lake.
Despite hopes of a dis-engagement, there remained a heavy presence of soldiers, tanks and several other armoured vehicles in the area.
The border conflicts between China and India stretch back several years, with the two sides fighting a brief war in 1962.
But the two sides have been unable to settle their border dispute following two decades of attempted peace talks.
Both countries currently claim thousands of miles of territory patrols along the Line of Actual Control – the de-facto border.
This is a breaking story. More to follow…
Published at Tue, 16 Jun 2020 07:35:00 +0000