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Indian Army apprehends Chinese soldier near disputed Himalayan border


A Chinese soldier was apprehended on the Indian side of the Line of Actual Control (LAC), south of the Pangong Tso lake in the Ladakh region on Friday, the Indian Army said in a statement.

The Chinese soldier was taken into custody by Indian troops after crossing over the LAC, the de facto border between the two countries. The reason for the soldier’s crossing of the LAC is being investigated, the statement said.

The strategically located lake, approximately 14,000 feet (4,267 meters) above sea level, spans an area stretching from the Indian territory of Ladakh to Chinese-controlled Tibet, in the greater Kashmir region where India, China and Pakistan all claim territory.

The LAC, which marks the de facto border, passes through the lake.

Troops from both sides have been deployed along the LAC since a bloody clash between Indian and Chinese troops in June marked the deadliest border conflict in more than 40 years.

At least 20 Indian soldiers were killed in that incident. China has never acknowledged any casualties from that clash.

In September, China and India agreed to stop sending more troops to the disputed Himalayan border, following an escalation in tensions between the two nuclear powers.

In a joint statement, both sides agreed to strengthen communication on the ground to avoid misunderstandings or action “that may complicate the situation.”

They also agreed to not take any unilateral action that would change the situation on the ground, the statement said.

India and China share a 2,100 mile-long (3,379-kilometer) border in the Himalayas, but both sides claim territory on either side of it.

The LAC was established in the wake of the 1962 Sino-Indian war and shows up on maps, however India and China do not agree on its precise location and both regularly accuse the other of overstepping it, or seeking to expand their territory.

In 1996, the two countries signed an agreement which states that neither side shall open fire within 2 kilometers (1.24 miles) from the LAC to “prevent dangerous military activities.”

Article Topic Follows: National-World

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