China claims sovereignty over Galwan Valleytext_fields
New Delhi: A day after India lost 20 of its soldiers in the bloodiest border skirmish in 45 years with the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) in the Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh on Monday night, China said that it has always "maintained sovereignty over the Galwan Valley region".
Senior Colonel Zhang Shuili, spokesperson for the Western Theater Command of the PLA, made a statement late on Tuesday over the clashes along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Galwan Valley area, Xinhua reported.
The sovereignty over the Galwan Valley area has always belonged to China, Shuili said in the statement.
He pointed out that "the Indian border troops reneged on their commitments, seriously violated agreements and protocols between the two countries on border issues and the consensus reached at the commander-level talks between the two militaries, and severely undermined the Sino-Indian military relations and the feelings of the two peoples".
"We demand the Indian military strictly restrains its frontline troops, immediately stops all infringing and provocative actions, work with the Chinese side towards the same goal, and return to the right track of resolving differences through dialogue and talks," Shuili stressed in the statement.
According to Chinese government backed daily Global Times, the country's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said in a press conference on Tuesday that despite China and India's close communication via diplomatic and military channels aimed at easing border tensions, Indian troops on Monday severely violated the consensus reached in the two countries' commander-level talks on June 6.
Indian Army lost 20 of its men, including officers, in an unprecedented violent clash with the Chinese People's Liberation Army troopers in the Galwan Valley on Monday night. The force said the death toll may increase, as many soldiers were grievously injured.
The Indian Ministry of External Affairs maintained that "there were casualties on both sides." "Their (China) casualties are in single digits so far," sources told IANS.