China urges India to protect peace after border altercation

Harvinder Singh and Salma Bibi

China said Wednesday that it was not aware of People's Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers entering Indian territory along the banks of the Pangong lake in Ladakh and maintained that it was committed to peace and tranquility along the border.

Chinesesoldiers tried to enter the Indian side twice between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. Personnel from both sides received minor injuries with the situation being finally brought under control after the customary banner drill under which both sides hold banners before stepping back to their respective positions. It began with Indian troops stopping Chinese army from building a road in the disputed area.

Army officials in Delhi have refused to comment on the incident, but have not denied it either. "But what I can tell you is that Chinese border forces have consistently and always dedicated themselves to protecting peace and tranquillity on the China-India border region and we have always patrolled on the Chinese side of the line of control", Hua told a daily news briefing. "We urge the Indian side to abide by the LAC and relevant conventions", she added. Earlier on July 16th, Indian troops stopped road construction by Chinese soldiers which raised a conflict between India and China in Doklam area in the Sikkim sector.

The latest incident comes amid an ongoing dispute between the two sides over a strategic Himalayan plateau thousands of kilometres away where hundreds of Indian and Chinese soldiers have been facing off against each other for more than two months.

It is not the first time that this particular region has been grasped by tension. However, there were reports of troops from both sides exchanging candies on the occasion on Tuesday.

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