Indian, Chinese troops clash at Ladakh; issue resolved with talks

India, China, Pangong Lake
A tense situation was triggered when Chinese soldiers confronted their Indian counterparts while they were patrolling the north side of the Pangong Lake. Photo for representational purpose only. PTI

A standoff between soldiers of India and China in the eastern Ladakh region that lasted a full day on Wednesday (September 11) has been resolved after peace talks, according to army sources.

Sources said a tense situation was triggered when Chinese soldiers confronted their Indian counterparts while they were patrolling the north side of the Pangong Lake. The Chinese argued that they reserved the rights to patrol the north side of the lake as two-thirds of the lake that extends from Tibet to Ladakh is under China’s control.

This led to a scuffle between the soldiers of both sides and reinforcements had been called in. After booth troops were pacified and sent to their bases, India had asked for a Border Personnel Meeting to resolve the issue. The standoff ended later through “delegation-level” talks.

An army source said that these issues occur because of there are different perceptions of where the Line of Actual Control (LAC) lies. “The matter has been de-escalated and disengaged fully after delegation-level talks yesterday. This occurs due to differing perceptions of LAC (Line of Actual Control). There are established mechanisms to resolve such occurrences,” the army source said, as quoted by NDTV.

This is not the first time Pangong Lake is witnessing standoffs between soldiers of both the countries.

On August 15, 2017, a similar clash between troops of both the countries was seen in the disputed Finger-5 to Finger-8 area of the Pangong Lake, after Chinese troops tried entering the Indian territory of the lake. Five days after the incident took place, a video of soldiers punching, kicking, and throwing stones at each other emerged. NDTV said authorities confirmed the authenticity of the video. The standoff was brought under control after two hours.

The standoff comes just ahead of the visit of Chinese president Xi Jinping to Mahabalipuram to attend the India-China informal summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.