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Saturday, February 27, 2021

China denies seizing Indian soldiers, lays claim to Galwan valley, talks peace

China denies seizing Indian soldiers. (Photo courtesy: dw)

(TibetanReview.net, Jun20’20) – After handing over on Jun 18 evening 10 Indian soldiers it had seized after a night raid on an Indian patrol team with deadly improvised weapons in Ladakh’s Galwan valley on Jun 15, China has claimed Jun 19 that it had not seized any Indian personnel.

The claim was made by Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian during a press briefing in response to a question about the China-India border situation and reported by the country’s official news channel CGTN (China Global Television Network).

This was an astonishing lie because the release, which included four officers, followed prolonged negotiations between the Indian Army and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army at the major general level.

The Indian Army too had maintained, as reported by New York Times Jun 17 (‘In China-India Clash, Two Nationalist Leaders with Little Room to Give’) that there were no Indian troops missing in action.

This does not mean, however, that the two sides are now ready to forget the incident and move on.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi made it clear that the sacrifice of the 20 soldiers who lost their lives during the Jun 15 night attack by Chinese soldiers will not go in vain.

On the Chinese side, Zhao has maintained that the responsibility for the Jun 15 night incident “entirely lies with the Indian side.”

According to latest reports, around 120 Indian soldiers were trapped and encircled by Chinese troops and thereafter savagely beaten, many to the point of mutilation, during the Jun 15 night incident.

Pointing firearms at them, Chinese troops, numbering five times the size of the Indian patrol team, brutally tortured Indian soldiers to death, thestatesman.com Jun 19 cited sources as saying.

Many Indian soldiers were helpless due to being under their government’s direction not to use firearms, the report added.

China was stated to have used thermal imaging drones to trace the Indian soldiers scattered on the treacherous terrain before brutally attacking them.

Zhao has also said the Galwan Valley where the attack took place was located on the Chinese side of the LAC in the west section of the China-India boundary, which came as news to the Indian side.

“For many years, the Chinese border troops have been patrolling in this region,” Zhao has claimed, alleging that since April this year, the Indian border troops had unilaterally and continuously built roads, bridges and other facilities at the LAC in the Galwan Valley.

He has maintained that India had gone even further to cross the LAC and made provocations even after China had lodged representations and protests on multiple occasions.

Meanwhile commander-level meetings between the two sides to resolve their differences are continuing.

The two sides agreed to handle in a just manner the serious situation caused by the Galwan Valley clash, observe the agreement reached during the commander-level meeting, cool down the situation on the ground as soon as possible, and uphold peace and tranquility of the border areas in accordance with bilateral agreements reached so far, China’s official Xinhua news agency Jun 19 cited Zhao as saying.

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