afp.com/India rebuffs Chinese Army’s land, water advances in Pangong Lake area

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SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association)

Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) recently made a two-pronged simultaneous incursion by sending troops into Indian waters in the PangongLake as well as five kilometers deep into Indian territory through the land route in the same area, according to reports.

The Indian media, quoting official sources, reported Sunday that according to security agencies Chinese boats entered into Indian waters at PangongLake nestled in the higher reaches of Ladakh on October 22.

These incursions were simultaneously backed by Chinese troops on the road built alongside PangongLake in eastern Ladakh and on the northern bank of PangongLake, located 168 kilometers from Leh.

Troops of Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) intercepted the Chinese troops at the supposed Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the lake.

ITBP soldiers also blocked Chinese troops trying to cross over the LAC by road.

A banner drill, in which both sides wave banners claiming it to be their territory, was carried out, followed by a face-off between the troops of the two sides.

Chinese troops had to return after the Indian troops neither allowed them to move their boats forward not allowed the troops on road to move an inch further, the reports said.

Chinese troops had managed to enter upto Finger IV area in the region from where they were sent back. Both India and China lay claim to this area. When the Indian side was trying to back its claim on the area during negotiations, the Chinese army constructed a metal-top road and claimed the area to be part of Aksai Chin area, the reports said.China had constructed a road up to Finger-IV area which falls under Siri Jap area and is five kilometers deep into the LAC, sources said.

The simultaneous approach to enter Indian waters was seen as a move by the Chinese troops to put psychological pressure on the Indian troops who man the area.

The Chinese patrols used to come frequently from the northern and southern banks of this lake, whose 45-kilometer stretch is on the Indian side while a 90-kilometer-stretch is on the Chinese side.

Indians are armed with high-speed interceptor boats, bought from the US, which can accommodate nearly 15 soldiers and are equipped with radars, infra-red and GPS systems.These boats are stated to be as good as the Chinese vessels and are used to conduct reconnaissance and area domination patrols.

The situation along the banks of the lake has always remained volatile with Chinese troops being intercepted by Indian Army patrol several times after the three-week long stand-off in the Depsang plains of Daulat Beg Oldie (DBO) in May last year.

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