Headlines May 28, 2020
India China military standoff intensifies
India has decided to not back down from a standoff with China along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh. The standoff centres around a strategic bridge being built near Daulat Beg Oldi. India has moved troops to counter Chinese forces stationed in the region.
Speaking to the media, experts in India said that the plan is to face the Chinese challenge with “strength and restraint”. A high-level security meeting in this matter was held by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The PM met National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) Gen Bipin Rawat to assess the situation along the LAC. There is a tense stand-off between thousands of Indian and Chinese troops, especially in Galwan Valley and Pangong Lake in eastern Ladakh.
India says it has faced such situations in the past and will deal with this one as well.
Indian security officials said that the focus of the Chinese action in the area was to “dominate the region” and stop India from completing the road connecting Darbuk to Shyok-Daulat Beg Oldi road. Once the road is metalled this will give India a major advantage in terms of access. A key part of this is the construction of a bridge at Daulat Beg Oldi that China wants to stop.
“India has decided to stand up to China in terms of troops, capacity and resources,” said an official to the media. China is believed to have stationed close to 5,000 soldiers on its side of Ladakh sector.
Indian and Chinese soldiers are eyeball-to-eyeball at four locations along the LAC and several rounds of talks between local military commanders have failed. Defence minister Rajnath Singh has also reviewed the situation in the Ladakh sector of the LAC during a meeting with the chief of defence staff and the three service chiefs.
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