Statement from India Army claims an officer and two soldiers died in face-off near Line of Actual Control in Ladakh
Three Indian soldiers were killed in the Galwan Valley of Ladakh on Monday night after a “violent face-off” between forces of India and China during ongoing ‘de-escalation’ efforts.
According to a statement issued by the Indian Army on Tuesday, an officer and two soldiers were killed near the Line of Actual Control (LAC). “During the de-escalation process underway in the Galwan Valley, a violent face-off took place yesterday night with casualties. The loss of lives on the Indian side includes an officer and two soldiers. Senior military officials of the two sides are currently meeting at the venue to defuse the situation,” it added.
In a subsequent amendment to its statement, the Indian Army claimed there were “casualties on both sides.” This would be first violent clash between Indian and Chinese troops that has resulted in fatalities since 1975.
Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian, in a statement, said he was not aware of any incident on the border with India.
Tensions between India and China have been mounting in the past two months due to a border dispute in the Ladakh region, with armies of both countries moving heavy weaponry and equipment to their base camps near the disputed territory.
India blames Chinese troops for the current situation, claiming they aggravated tensions by moving into the Pangong Tso and Galwan Valley areas earlier this month. Delhi has claimed the Chinese Army has bolstered its presence in Demchok and Daulat Beg Oldie areas as well.
On May 6, troops from both countries clashed and hurled stones at each other, with and Indian Army spokesman claiming there was also a verbal argument that ended in a fistfight.