China and India meet after deadly border clash in disputed region kills at least 20
Chinese and Indian military commanders have agreed to disengage their forces in a disputed area of the Himalayas following a clash that left at least 20 soldiers dead.
- Both India and China say they have agreed to “cool down the situation”
- Soldier from both countries clashed on June 15, leaving at least 20 dead
- The incident happened in the Galwan Valley, a disputed area between the nations
The commanders reached the agreement Monday in their first meeting since the June 15 confrontation, both countries said.
The confrontation in the Galwan Valley, part of the disputed Ladakh region along the Himalayan frontier, was the deadliest between the two countries in decades.
“The two sides had a frank and in-depth exchange of views on the prominent issues in the current border control and agreed to take necessary measures to cool down the situation,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said.
The Indian army said in a statement that talks were held in Moldo, on the Chinese side of the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
The statement said the talks were “cordial, positive and constructive” and there was a “mutual consensus to disengage”.
Mr Zhao denied apparent speculation by an Indian government minister that 40 Chinese troops had died in the June 15 clash.
“I can tell you responsibly that it is false information,” he said at a daily briefing.
Soldiers brawled with clubs, rocks and their fists in the thin air at 4,270 metres above sea level, but no shots were fired, Indian officials have said.
The soldiers carry firearms but are not allowed to use them under a previous agreement in the border dispute.
“They attacked with iron rods, the commanding officer was grievously injured and fell, and when that happened, more soldiers swarmed to the area and attacked with stones,” the source said.
Indian security officials have said the fatalities were caused by severe injuries and exposure to subfreezing temperatures.
The valley falls within a remote stretch of the 3,380 kilometre LAC — the border established following a war between India and China in 1962 that resulted in an uneasy truce.