Chinese troops again engaged in provocative action yesterday at LAC: MEA

New Delhi (NVI): Just two days after the Indian Army thwarted a Chinese incursion along the Line of Actual Control in Eastern Ladakh, China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) again engaged in “provocative action” along the LAC yesterday, the Ministry of External Affairs said today.

“Yesterday on 31st August, even as the ground commanders of the two sides were in discussions to de-escalate the situation, the Chinese troops again engaged in provocative action,” MEA spokesman Anurag Srivastava said.

However, due to the timely defensive action, the Indian side was able to prevent these attempts to unilaterally alter the status quo, Srivastava added.

Earlier on the intervening night of last Saturday and Sunday, the Chinese side troops had made an attempt to change the status quo on the southern bank of Pangong Tso Lake along the LAC but it was thwarted by the Indian Army.

The MEA spokesman, in the press briefing here, condemned PLA’s actions at LAC, saying that “The actions and behavior of the Chinese side since earlier this year along the LAC has been in clear violation of the bilateral agreements and protocols concluded between the two countries to ensure peace and tranquility on the border.”

“Such actions are also in complete disregard to the understandings reached between the two Foreign Ministers as also the Special Representatives,” he added.

The External Affairs Ministry spokesman said that India has taken up the matter of recent provocative and aggressive actions with the Chinese side through both diplomatic and military channels and have urged them (China) to discipline and control their frontline troops from undertaking such provocative actions.

“The Indian side is firmly committed to resolve all outstanding issues along the LAC in the Western Sector through peaceful dialogue. In this context, we expect the Chinese side to sincerely abide by the understanding reached earlier and earnestly work with the India to resolve the situation and to restore peace and tranquility in the border areas,” he said.

The armies of the two countries have been in a face-off situation for the last four months, triggered by China’s aggressive actions at multiple points in the Eastern Ladakh sector in early May. On one occasion, the militaries of the two countries engaged in a bloody fight in the Galwan Valley on June 15, in which India lost 20 soldiers, including a Colonel. China also suffered an unspecified number of casualties.

Over these last four months, several rounds of talks have been held at military and diplomatic levels but China has refused to pull back its troops from the friction points, in its attempt to change the status quo at the LAC.

-ARK