Military tensions mount on the India-China border
June 17, 2020 - The fiercest border clash between India and China in over 40 years left 20 Indian soldiers dead and worsened tensions between nuclear-armed rivals that increasingly view each other as strategic rivals.
At least 20 Indian soldiers, including a colonel, died of severe injuries suffered in sub-zero temperatures, Indian officials said, after the two sides threw rocks and traded blows in the culmination of a months-long standoff in the Galwan Valley near the Line of Actual Control that separates the two countries.
No shots were fired because neither side’s patrolling soldiers carry firearms, in accordance with the terms of the unresolved border dispute, Indian officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to disclose information.
Still, it was the worst violence since 1962, when a war over completing claims on the remote Himalayan area ended with an uneasy truce.
Thousands of soldiers backed by armoured trucks and artillery have been facing off near the border. Scuffles are not uncommon, but Indian authorities say China upped the ante when its troops breached the line of control.
China accused Indian forces of carrying out “provocative attacks” on its troops. China’s defence ministry confirmed there had also been casualties on its side but given no numbers.
- India, China troops clash at Himalayan border, casualties on both sides (Reuters)
- Twenty Indian soldiers killed in clash with Chinese troops in Himalayas (FT)
- Military tensions mount on the India-China border (The Economist)
- Worst Clash in Decades on Disputed India-China Border Kills 20 Indian Troops (NYT)
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