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Chinese and Indian troops ‘in new border clash

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Chinese and Indian troops have reportedly clashed again in a disputed border area, with injuries on both sides, Indian media reports say.

The incident took place in north Sikkim last Wednesday. India’s army said there had been a “minor” incident that had been “resolved”.

Tensions are high along the world’s longest disputed border. Both sides claim large areas of territory.

At least 20 Indian soldiers died in a skirmish in the Ladakh area last June.

The latest incident happened at the Nathu La pass in Sikkim, the media reports said. The Sikkim region is sandwiched between Bhutan and Nepal, about 2,500km (1,500 miles) east of the Ladakh area.

A Chinese patrol tried to enter Indian territory and was forced back, the officials said.

An Indian army statement played down the incident, saying there “was a minor face-off at Nathu La area of North Sikkim on 20 January 2021 and the same was resolved by local commanders as per established protocols”.

 

Rivers, lakes and snowcaps along the ill-defined, 3,440km (2,100-mile) border mean the line can shift, bringing soldiers face to face at many points, sometimes leading to confrontation.

The deadliest was in the Galwan Valley in Ladakh last June. China also reportedly suffered casualties but made no comment.

Since the deadly hand-to-hand fighting, the two sides have held de-escalation talks – the latest of them between military commanders on Sunday.

 

Both countries have a lot to lose, with China one of India’s biggest trading partners.

The two countries have fought only one war, in 1962, when India suffered a heavy defeat.

BBC.COM

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