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Violent face-off in Galwan Valley as Chinese troops attempted to unilaterally change status quo: India

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New Delhi: India said on Tuesday that a violent face-off happened on late evening and night of June 15 in Ladakh’s Galwan Valley as a result of an attempt by the Chinese troops to “unilaterally change” the status quo during de-escalation and the situation could have been avoided if the agreement at the higher level been scrupulously followed by the Chinese side.
External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said both sides suffered casualties in the violent face-off and the Chinese side departed from the consensus to respect the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Galwan Valley.
Responding to media queries on the situation in the western sector of the India-China border, Srivastava said that India and China have been discussing through military and diplomatic channels the de-escalation of the situation in the border area in Eastern Ladakh.
He said commanders of two sides had a productive meeting on June 6 and agreed on a process for such de-escalation and subsequently ground commanders had a series of meetings to implement the consensus reached at a higher level.
“While it was our expectation that this would unfold smoothly, the Chinese side departed from the consensus to respect the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Galwan Valley. On the late evening and night of June 15, 2020 a violent face-off happened as a result of an attempt by the Chinese side to unilaterally change the status quo there. Both sides suffered casualties that could have been avoided had the agreement at the higher level been scrupulously followed by the Chinese side,” he said.
Srivastava said that given its responsible approach to border management, India is very clear that all its activities are always within the Indian side of the LAC.
“We expect the same of the Chinese side,” he said.
The spokesperson said that India remains firmly convinced of the need for maintenance of peace and tranquillity in the border areas and the resolution of differences through dialogue.
“At the same time, we are also strongly committed to ensuring India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” he said.
The loss of lives on the Indian side during the violent face-off includes an officer and two soldiers.
This is the first violent incident on LAC since 1975 in which casualties have taken place. (ANI)

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