No headway in India, China military talks over Pangong Tso for fourth day running
New Delhi: Military talks between India and China over fresh incursion attempts in Indian territories by the Chinese People Liberation Army (PLA) ended “inconclusively” for the fourth consecutive day.
In a four-hour long meeting, the Chinese side remained adamant and refused to retreat from Eastern Ladakh. “Brigade Commander-level officers from both the countries met at Chushul to resolve the issues,” said a senior government officer.
Earlier in the day, Indian Army chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane went to Ladakh to review operational preparedness of the forces amid the ongoing border stand-off with China. On a two-day trip, General Naravane reached Leh in the morning and interacted with senior officers.
General Naravane is known to have discussed strategies on how to thwart Chinese incursion attempts. Troops of the China’s People Liberation Army (PLA) have made fresh incursion attempts in Indian territories. Military representatives of both the countries are engaged in a dialogue to de-escalate tensions.
China had made provocative military movements in an attempt to change the status quo at Pangong Tso. On August 31, Chinese troops had indulged in provocative actions after Indian soldiers occupied the heights there to thwart a PLA land-grabbing bid over the weekend. On the intervening night of August 29 and August 30, 2020, PLA troops violated the consensus agreed upon in military and diplomatic engagements during the ongoing standoff in eastern Ladakh.
Army Chief Naravane will also be reviewing the formidable logistical challenges posed by the harsh climate at heights of more than 12,000 feet and temperatures as extreme as minus 50 degrees Celsius. The force requires special clothing, diet and shelter for close to 35,000 additional troops deployed in Eastern Ladakh. Most of the friction points in Ladakh — such as Pangong Lake and Galwan Valley — where the face-offs have happened, are located 14,000-feet above the sea level.
Both countries have been engaged in a four-month fractious standoff at the Line of Actual Control in eastern Ladakh. Despite several levels of dialogue, there hasn’t been any breakthrough and the deadlock continues.
On June 15, as many as 20 Indian soldiers and an unknown number of Chinese troops were killed in a violent clash at Galwan Valley.