China and India at Ladakh, an armed conflict between two nuclear-armed neighbours, a minimum of 20 Indian soldiers were killed within the Galwan Valley in Ladakh after a “violent face-off” with Chinese troops ensued.
The injured troops “exposed to sub-zero temperatures within the high altitude terrain have succumbed to their injuries”, ANI reported, adding this had brought the worth , from the earlier reported three to twenty .
According to earlier reports by Indian media, three troops, including an official and two soldiers were among those killed near the road of Actual Control (LAC). “During the de-escalation process underway within the Galwan Valley, a violent face-off happened yesterday night with casualties. The loss of lives on the Indian side includes an official and two soldiers. Senior military officials of the two sides are currently meeting at the venue to defuse things ,” an official statement said.
Meanwhile, British news outlet The Telegraph, quoting Indian army sources, reported that four soldiers are currently missing and an additional 32 “were handed back after being captured”.
Indian media also reported that 40 Chinese soldiers were killed within the clash, however, the news was soon retracted.
Inspite India and China standoff within the western Himalayas for weeks, there had been no casualties on either side.
In Beijing, Zhao Lijian, a spokesman for the Foreign Ministry, said that Indian illegally crossed the border two times on Monday and attacked Chinese personnel. He said the Chinese lodged strong protest but continued to work toward resolving the tensions between the two countries.
According to the Hindustan Times, Beijing accused the Indian army of provoking and attacking Chinese soldiers after a border meeting to de-escalate the continued tension led to a “physical conflict” between the two sides. Reuters’ report suggested that Beijing warned New Delhi to not take unilateral action or stir up trouble.
China have rival claims to vast swathes of territory along their 3,500 kilometers Himalayan border, but the disputes have remained largely peaceful since a border war in 1962.