Indian Army Colonel, 20 soldiers killed in face-off with China in Ladakh

Story updated on June 16 evening

Monitoring Desk: The Indian Army on Tuesday evening confirmed that 20 Indian soldiers and one Colonel were killed in the “violent face-off” with Chinese troops in the Galwan Valley on Monday.

“Indian and Chinese troops have disengaged at the Galwan area where they had earlier clashed on the night of 15/16 June 2020. 17 Indian troops who were critically injured in the line of duty at the standoff location and exposed to sub-zero temperatures in the high altitude terrain have succumbed to their injuries, taking the total killed in action to 20,” the Army said in its official statement. “Indian Army is firmly committed to protecting the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the nation,” it added.

The Chinese foreign ministry has responded to this by saying that India had carried out “provocative attacks” on Chinese soldiers after “illegally crossing” the border, Global Times reported. “China and Indian side agreed to resolve the bilateral issues through dialogue to ease the border situation and maintain peace and tranquility in border areas,” it continued.

Earlier Story

An Indian Army Colonel and two soldiers were killed in a clash with Chinese soldiers in the Galwan Valley area of eastern Ladakh, reports India Today.

India Today while referring official Statement of Indian Ministry of Defence and Indian Army reported that an Army officer and two soldiers were killed in a “violent face-off” with the Chinese Army in Ladakh on Monday night. Dead included a Colonel-rank officer. Dead Colonel was Battalion Commander. This is the first killing of Indian Army officers after 1967, reported Indian Media.

The story was released to Indian Media on Tuesday afternoon while the incident took place on Monday evening.

Indian Army Chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane canceled a scheduled visit to Pathankot after the incident and held a meeting with Indian Prime Minister Modi, reported Indian media.

Pangong Tso or Pangong is an endorheic lake in the Ladakh region on Line of Actual Control between India and China. This is the disputed region. Lake is situated at a height of 14,270 feet above sea level. It is 134 km (83 mi) long. The lake is 5 km (3.1 mi) wide at its broadest point. All together it covers 604 km2. During winter the lake freezes completely, despite being saline water. It is not a part of the Indus river basin area and geographically a separate landlocked river basin.

 


India is constantly changing the demography, the physical and political status of entire disputed Himalayan region where India is eating up Nepali territory, unilaterally changed status of Jammu and Kashmir valley, and now Ladakh region.

Here is the full official statement from the Indian Army:

“During the de-escalation process underway in the Galwan Valley, a violent face-off took place yesterday night with casualties. The loss of lives on the Indian side includes an officer and two soldiers. Senior military officials of the two sides are currently meeting at the venue to defuse the situation.”

It is pertinent to mention that the Indian and Chinese armies have been locked in an over five-week standoff in Pangong Tso, Galwan Valley, Demchok and Daulat Beg Oldie in Eastern Ladakh.

 

 

Chinese Response:

India should not take unilateral actions or stir up trouble, said Chinese foreign ministry, reports Times Now News. When asked about the Indian army reporting casualties in the clash with China, the Chinese foreign ministry said that India should not take unilateral actions or stir up trouble.