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2 Indian soldiers and 1 officer killed in clashes on Chinese border – New Delhi

An Indian Army officer and two soldiers were killed in a clash with Chinese troops on Monday night in the Galwan Valley in Kashmir, local media reported.

Senior military officials from both countries are currently meeting to de-escalate the situation, according to a military statement cited by Indian outlets.

India has claimed that there were casualties on both sides, although they did not disclose how many Chinese personnel were killed in the clash.

The Indian army said the incident took place in the Galwan Valley in the high-altitude Ladakh region — which is just opposite Tibet.

For weeks, Indian and Chinese troops have been engaged in a tense standoff in several places along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh, which is part of India-controlled Kashmir.

Several hundred Chinese and Indian soldiers faced off in a brief skirmish in early May. The Indian Army sent reinforcements, including military vehicles and artillery, to the area following the violent flare-up.

On May 9, several Indian and Chinese soldiers were injured in a clash involving fists and stone-throwing.

The Chinese foreign ministry said only last week that a “positive consensus” on resolving the latest border issue was achieved following “effective communication” through diplomatic and military channels.

In a later statement, India’s foreign ministry had said the two sides would “continue the military and diplomatic engagements to resolve the situation and to ensure peace and tranquility in the border areas.”

But sources and Indian news reports suggested that India appeared to have effectively ceded to China areas that the People’s Liberation Army occupied in recent weeks, notably parts of the northern side of the Pangong Tso lake and some of the strategically important Galwan river valley.

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese leader Xi Jinping have sought to ease tensions at summits over the past two years when they agreed to boost border communications between their militaries.

The ongoing escalation in the region has been attributed at least in part to India’s anger over China’s decision to build roads and airstrips near the border.

China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said Indian troops crossed the border twice on Monday, “provoking and attacking Chinese personnel, resulting in serious physical confrontation between border forces on the two sides.” He called on India not to take unilateral actions or stir up trouble.

“There was no firing,” an Indian army officer in the region told AFP.

“No firearms were used. It was violent hand-to-hand scuffles.”

The Chinese People’s Liberation Army “also suffered casualties in the Galwan Valley physical clash,” editor-in-chief of China’s Global Times newspaper Hu Xijin said in a tweet on Tuesday.

Source: SPUTNIK