India, China engage in 3rd military dialogue after fresh skirmishes at Pangong Tso
The Indian and Chinese militaries began the third round of talks at Chushul on Tuesday to resolve the fresh skirmishes at Pangong Lake in eastern Ladakh.
“A Brigade Commander-level talk started at 10 am in Chushul on the Indian side,” said a source.
The agenda of the deliberation were the fresh development at three contentious points on the southern banks of the Pangong Lake. India has also raised concerns about Chinese deployment in areas near the Black Top and Helmet Top.
Indian troops have also occupied hill tops and the Chinese want them to step back.
Talks between the two sides took place for five long hours on Monday also.
Indian and Chinese troops were engaged in skirmishes at the southern bank of the Pangong Lake where the Chinese brought in close to 450 troops and attempted to change the status quo, the Indian Army said as it thwarted the opponent’s effort.
Sources said Chinese People’s Liberation Army troops with help of ropes and other climbing equipment started climbing at a table-top area between Black Top and Thakung Heights at Pangong Tso’s south bank.
Hearing the commotion, the Indian Army was alerted and swung into action.
Earlier, Indian intelligence agencies had alerted the Indian Army about the Chinese’s PLA plans to change the status quo in other areas along the Line of Actual Control. Thereafter, skirmishes erupted between both sides but things did not escalate. When Chinese troops saw the strength of Indian troops, the skirmishes stopped.
“Both the countries’ troops are still in an eyeball-to-eyeball position,” said a source. To further de-escalate, the brigade commander-level flag meeting is taking place.
The Indian Army, however, has officially denied any skirmish.
In a statement issued here, the Indian Army said that on the intervening night of August 29 and August 30, PLA troops violated the previous consensus agreed in military and diplomatic engagements during the ongoing standoff in eastern Ladakh and carried out provocative military movements to change the status quo.
“Indian troops pre-empted this PLA activity on the southern bank of Pangong Lake, and undertook measures to strengthen our positions and thwart Chinese intentions to unilaterally change facts on the ground,” the force said.
The Indian Army also stated that they are committed to maintaining peace and tranquillity through dialogue, but are also equally determined to protect India’s territorial integrity. China on Monday maintained its troops never crossed the Line of Actual Control.