India, China hold talks amid ‘volatile’ border situation

Indian and Chinese military commanders have held talks for a second day as rival soldiers confront each other at their contested Himalayan border in Ladakh, bringing fears of a military escalation.

Both of the Asian giants have accused the other of fresh provocations, including allegations of soldiers crossing into each other’s territory, months after their deadliest standoff in decades.

Details of the talks which resumed on Tuesday morning weren’t immediately disclosed.

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“Both armies are now confronting each other at the border, it’s an extremely volatile and dangerous situation out there,” Ajai Shukla, defence analyst, told Al Jazeera.

“India has been trying to sort of arrange a mutual de-escalation, a disengagement and a pullback to their respective sides of the border.

But by all accounts, China is not willing to do that, it is willing to talk, but at the same time, it’s continuing its hostile and aggressive stance – and that is what is causing the Indian side to build up and to be prepared for any further escalation of the situation by China.”

On Monday, India said its soldiers had thwarted “provocative” movements by China’s military on Saturday night. In turn, China’s defence ministry accused Indian troops of crossing established lines of control and creating provocations along the disputed border on Monday.

Both India and China have provided little information, but media in the two countries have given extensive coverage to the escalating tensions.

Al Jazeera’s Katrina Yu reporting from Beijing, said: “We have had a more aggressive response from Chinese state media. The Global Times which had a quite aggressive editorial saying that India should be under no illusion that the Chinese are not willing and ready to take on India.”

The official newspaper of China’s ruling Communist Party blamed India for the latest standoff.

“But there has also been an acknowledgement from China that India is also an important neighbour – a lot of trade is done with India and they would like to maintain peace,” Katrina Yu said.

ave been holding dialogue to negotiate a Chinese withdrawal from the border since May when the Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) troops transgressed into the Indian side of the de facto border known as Line of Actual Control (LAC).

Tens of thousands of troops from the rivals sides have amassed across the disputed border since then. The border conflagration escalated on June 15 when 20 Indian soldiers were killed in clashes in Ladakh’s Galwan Valley.

 

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