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India Deploys Special Forces To Eastern Border, As Tensions With China Reportedly Flare

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India Deploys Special Forces To Eastern Border, As Tensions With China Reportedly Flare

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The tensions between China and India have, once again, flared in the contested Himalayan region of Ladakh.

India deployed its Special Frontier Force (SFF) after Chinese troops allegedly attempted to claim an area of the Ladakh region in the north of the country.

There were also reports that a soldier of Tibetan origin, part of the Indian special forces had been killed in skirmishes with Chinese forces.

The Indian government has not commented on the reports of the death, but Namgyal Dolkar Lhagyari, a member of the Tibetan Parliament in exile said that a soldier had been killed and another had been wounded.

China’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying, however, said on Wednesday that no Indian troops had died in the latest flare-up on their frontier.

Tensions have been a bit strained since June 15th, when both sides had a skirmish without firearms in which India admitted that it lost 20 soldiers, and China lost an undisclosed number.

On August 29th, India’s defence ministry said Chinese troops “carried out provocative military movements to change the status quo” at the border.

China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) said that India was “seriously violating China’s territorial sovereignty” with its operation on August 31st and demanded that Indian troops withdraw.

A Chinese embassy spokeswoman in New Delhi also denied that Chinese troops started the latest flare-up, accusing Indian troops of trespassing across the Line of Actual Control – the de facto border – and conducting “flagrant provocations”.

On September 1st, India’s foreign ministry said on Tuesday that China had caused the latest incident “even as ground commanders of the two sides were in discussions to de-escalate the situation”.

“Due to timely defensive action, the Indian side was able to prevent these attempts from unilaterally altering the status quo,” ministry spokesman Anurag Srivastava said in a statement.

Reuters cited Ayushi Sudan, Anjaw’s chief civil servant who said that India was working to reinforce its Eastern border ever since June.

“The military presence has surely increased, but as far as incursions are concerned, there are no verified reports as such,” she said, adding that several Indian army battalions were stationed there.

“There has been an increase in troop deployment since the Galwan incident and even prior to that we’d started,” she told Reuters by telephone.

According to India there was no cause to concern along the border.

Indian military spokesman, Lieutenant Colonel Harsh Wardhan Pande, said that it was standard procedure.

“Basically, it’s units changing. That’s happening as it happens every time, nothing much,” Pande told Reuters from near Guwahati, the largest city in northeastern India.

“As of now, there’s nothing to worry about on that front.”

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