After China’s military accused India of “outrageously firing warning shots” in a new confrontation on Monday and Indian Army responding that it is the PLA that has been blatantly violating agreements and carrying out aggressive manoeuvres, the Chinese Foreign Ministry has repeated its stand.
“It was the Indian side that fired first in the Monday incident in which Indian troops again illegally crossed the Line of Actual Control (LAC) of the China-India border and outrageously fired warning shots at Chinese border defense patrol personnel who were attempting to negotiate,” China’s Global Times reported its Foreign Ministry as saying on Tuesday.
“This marked the first time that the tranquility on the China-India border has been broken by gunfire since 1975,” said Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian at a regular press conference.
China has made representations to India via diplomatic and military channels, Zhao said, noting that differences should be resolved through peaceful talks and that confrontation benefits neither side.
Zhao’s comments came after the Indian army claimed in a statement on Tuesday that “at no stage has the Indian army transgressed across the LAC or resorted to use of any aggressive means, including firing.”
“The Indian troops crossed the LAC at the western section of the China-India border into the Shenpao mountain region near the southern bank of Pangong Tso Lake,” said Senior Colonel Zhang Shuili, a spokesperson of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Western Theater Command, in a statement released on early Tuesday.
“During its operation, the Indian army outrageously fired warning shots at Chinese border defense patrol personnel who were attempting to negotiate, which is a serious military provocation and is vile in nature, and Chinese border defense troops were forced to take countermeasures to stabilize the situation,” Zhang said.
“The Indian side’s move seriously violated related agreements reached by both sides, stirred up tensions in the region, and could easily cause misunderstandings and misjudgments,” said Zhang.
Zhang said that China demands the Indian side immediately stop its dangerous moves, withdraw personnel who crossed the LAC at once, strictly control frontline troops, seriously investigate and punish the personnel who fired the provocative shot and ensure similar incidents do not take place again.