Intense negotiations through diplomatic and military channels, including three rounds of talks between senior military officers, resulted in the release of 10 Indian soldiers detained through the Chinese side through the violent brawl of June 15 in Galwan Valley, people familiar with developments said.
Individuals, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the ten soldiers, including a minimum of two officers, were returned into the Indian side on Thursday evening, 72 hours after the violent face-off on the Series of Actual Control (LAC) that left 20 soldiers, including a colonel, dead.
These negotiations were kept tightly under wraps because of concerns for the safety of your soldiers amid the heightened tensions between your two sides, people said.
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There was clearly no official word around the development. Everything the Indian Army and also the external affairs ministry had said on Thursday was that no Indian soldiers were “missing in action”.
The release from the 10 soldiers figured in three rounds of talks between Indian and Chinese delegations, led by major generals, near Patrol Point 14 in Galway Valley between Tuesday and Thursday. Maj Gen Abhijit Bapat, commander of Karu-based headquarters 3 Infantry Division, along with his Chinese counterpart, met for your third time on Thursday.
The meetings were part of ongoing military engagements to de-escalate the specific situation also to disengage about the disputed border. Both senior military officers have met seven times considering that the stand-off began during the early May.
People further said the 10 soldiers, after their release, were sent for a medical examination and were “debriefed” by officials.
The past time chinese people military had captured Indian soldiers was through the border war between the two countries in 1962. Monday night’s seven-hour brutal clash involving a lot more than 500 rival troops also marked the 1st time India suffered combat fatalities inside an incident involving Chinese troops since 1975.
Following reports that this unspecified range of soldiers were unaccounted for after Monday night’s clash, the Indian Army had on Thursday only mentioned that none of the personnel were missing in action.
“It is clarified that there are no Indian troops missing in action,” the army said in a very terse statement. An army spokesperson had said the statement was in reference into the article “In China-India Clash, Two Nationalist Leaders with Little Room to Give” within the Nyc Times on Wednesday.
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Asked concerning the specific issue from the status of Indian soldiers as soon as the clash of June 15, external affairs ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava told a weekly media briefing on Thursday: “This is clarified from the army earlier today afternoon there are no Indian troops missing in action.”
China has to date not acknowledged any casualties among its troops, even though some 76 Indian soldiers were also injured. Army officials claimed 43 Chinese were killed or seriously injured, citing radio intercepts along with other intelligence. The Chinese fatal casualties reportedly feature a colonel-ranked officer but HT couldn’t independently verify this.
India has attributed the clash of June 15 on Chinese forces crossing for the Indian side of the LAC and attempting to make a structure. It offers also rejected China’s People’s Liberation Army’s claim of sovereignty on the Galwan Valley.
A top retired army commander, who didn’t need to be identified, said: “China has achieved exactly what it lay out to get – control over Galwan Valley and [the strategic feature] Finger 4. The gesture of returning the soldiers is actually a message to everyone they can [the Chinese] are certainly not the aggressors and so they have returned folks who intruded inside their territory.”