After acknowledging casualties, China releases video of Galwan Valley clash
China has released a video showing its soldiers clashing with Indian troops in the Galwan Valley, Ladakh, in June last year, hours after it acknowledged casualties. The footage vividly details the episode and also features the skirmish that happened during the night. Shen Shiwei, a Chinese state media analyst, shared the clip claiming that Indian soldiers "trespassed into their side." Here's more.
Early last year, the two nuclear-armed nations came face-to-face after China objected to India's infrastructure push along the Line of Actual Control (LAC). In mid-June, the situation further nosedived when personnel of China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) attacked Indians soldiers — 20 of them laid down their lives, eventually. It was only after eight months, that China admitted that it also lost four soldiers.
As per reports, China released the clash video in an attempt to douse the criticism it is garnering at home. Citizens have been quizzing why President Xi Jinping's regime kept quiet for months. Notably, Beijing made the first admission about deaths days after Russia's state-run news agency TASS claimed that 45 servicemen of PLA had died. This number was unreported until now.
Now, the new clip has given an insight into what happened at the time. Several soldiers from both sides were seen crossing an icy river, coming dangerously close and arguing with one another. After night crept in, the soldiers purportedly carried flashlights. Beijing claims that three of its soldiers were killed in combat and one died while crossing the icy river.
When asked why Beijing didn't speak of casualties until now, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying said the information was disclosed "because the truth is long-awaited." "These heroes will be remembered by the Chinese people. Their sacrifices made to defend our territory will never be forgotten by the Chinese people," she asserted, adding that China isn't responsible for the violent episode.
The video, clearly another attempt by the Chinese to claim that the Galwan Valley clash wasn't incited by them, is yet to get a response from India. Earlier this month, both nations had agreed to pull back their troops, marking a significant breakthrough. Following the expected timeline, the disengagement process in the Pangong Lake area of eastern Ladakh wrapped up yesterday.
As a part of the disengagement process, both armies withdrew their frontline troops, tanks, infantry combat vehicles, and artillery guns. Military structures built after April 2020 were also removed. Meanwhile, the tenth round of talks between military commanders is scheduled for today. The senior officers would be meeting at Moldo on the Chinese side to discuss disengagement at Gogra and Hot Springs.