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Clash between Indian and Chinese soldiers in cross-border

May 12, 2020 | 12:44

A violent clash between Indian and Chinese soldiers broke out at a strategic mountain pass in the Himalayas on Saturday, May 9. Troops also threw stones in face-off involving 150 soldiers at remote crossing point near Tibet, says Indian army.

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A violent clash between Indian and Chinese soldiers broke out at a strategic mountain pass in the Himalayas on Saturday, May 9.

According to the Press Trust of India, 150 soldiers were involved in the face-off which took place near the 15,000 feet Nathu La crossing which connects India's Sikkim state with Tibet, informed the guardian

indian and chinese soldiers injured in cross border stone throwing fistfight
The Nathula Pass in Sikkim, India. File photo: Bloomberg

Several troops were injured with soldiers from both sides throwing both fists and stones at one another.

An "aggressive" cross-border skirmish between Chinese and Indian forces Saturday resulted in minor injuries to troops, a spokesman for the Indian Ministry of Defence has confirmed.

indian and chinese soldiers injured in cross border stone throwing fistfight
Chinese army officers stand on China’s side of the border with India at Nathu La Pass, in northeastern Indian state of Sikkim. Photograph: Gurinder Osan/AP

There have been long-running border tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbours, with a bitter war fought over the Indian north-eastern state of Arunachal Pradesh in 1962.

The incident, which occurred at a remote, mountainous crossing close to Tibet, is the latest in a long line of border flare-ups between the two neighboring powers, the ctvnews.ca

"Aggressive behavior by the two sides resulted in minor injuries to troops," said the spokesman.

"The two sides disengaged after dialogue and interaction at a local level. Troops resolve such issues mutually as per established protocols," the spokesman added.

Eleven soldiers, four Indian and seven Chinese, were reported to have been injured in the incident, which took place during a patrol in Nuka La, North Sikkim, according to CNN affiliate News18.

The Indian ministry spokesman said "temporary and short" face-offs between troops from both countries are a regular occurrence due to the fact that "boundaries are not resolved."

CNN has requested comment from the Chinese foreign ministry.

India and China share one of the world's longest land borders. In 1962, the two countries engaged in a bloody Himalayan border war and skirmishes have continued to break out sporadically in the decades since.

In 2017, the two sides engaged in a months-long territorial standoff on the disputed Doklam plateau, on the unmarked border between China and Bhutan.

Though not a part of Indian territory, the area is close to the "chicken's neck," a strategic corridor that serves as a vital artery between Delhi and its far northeastern states.

After months of rising tensions and live-fire drills, the two governments eventually agreed to back down in August 2017. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping agreed to work together to avoid further border disputes in 2018.

But despite the agreement, tensions continue. As recently as September 2019, Indian and Chinese troops became involved in a "scuffle" on the border near Pangong Lake in the Himalayas, according to News18.

indian and chinese soldiers injured in cross border stone throwing fistfight
150 soldiers from China (left) and India (right) were seen fighting against each other in the strategic mountain pass of Nathu La (pictured) on Saturday (AFP/DIPTENDU DUTTA)

indian and chinese soldiers injured in cross border stone throwing fistfight
This 2008 image shows a Chinese soldier and an Indian soldier at the Nathu La border crossing. Photograph: Diptendu Dutta/AFP/Getty Images

Relations since the Doklam dispute between the two Asian giants appeared to improve following talks between Chinese president Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Wuhan, China, in 2018.

The two men also met in October last year in Chennai in southern India.

China still claims about 90,000 square kilometres (35,000 square miles) of territory under New Delhi’s control. And the foxnews also reported that Skirmishes between the two Asian giants have occurred in the decades since both countries engaged in a 1962 conflict over the Himalayan border. China claims about 35,000 square miles in the Indian province of Arunachal Pradesh, referred to informally by some Chinese as "Southern Tibet."

India believes China is occupying 15,000 square miles of its territory on the Aksai Chin plateau.

In the past, India has argued much of its 2,000-mile border with China is undefined, according to the Wall Street Journal. It most recently accused Beijing of sending it faulty coronavirus test kits

In 2017, a standoff ensued after India sent troops to stop China from constructing a road in the northwest Indian region of Ladakh, France 24 reported. The incident also involved the throwing of stones.

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