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‘Disengagement process along LAC not yet complete’: India slams China

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New Delhi, July 30: India on Thursday slammed Beijing's claim of complete disengagement in most locations by the frontline border troops in Galwan, Gogra and Hot Spring areas in eastern Ladakh.

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"India and China agreed that early and complete disengagement of troops along Line of Actual Control and de-escalation from border areas, and full restoration of peace and tranquillity was essential for smooth overall development of bilateral relations," said a statement from the Ministry of External Affairs.

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This was also the agreement reached between the two Special Representatives, NSA and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, in their conversation on 5th July.

"There has been some progress made towards this objective but the disengagement process has as yet not been completed. The Senior Commanders of the two sides will be meeting in the near future to work out steps in this regard," the statement said.

"As we have stated earlier, the maintenance of peace and tranquillity in the border areas is the basis of our bilateral relationship. Therefore, we expect that the Chinese side will sincerely work with us for complete disengagement and de-escalation and full restoration of peace and tranquillity in the border areas at the earliest as agreed to by the Special Representatives," it added.

Earlier, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin had made the claim at a briefing in Beijing when he was asked whether the border troops from India and China have completed the disengagement from Galwan, Gogra and Hot Spring areas in eastern Ladakh.

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    The reference to Pangong Tso, a major friction point, was conspicuously absent in the question asked by a reporter from China's official media.

    During the briefing, the spokesman noted that China and India have recently conducted "intensive communication through military and diplomatic channels."

    "Now the frontline border troops have completed disengagement in most locations and the situation on the ground is easing," Wang said.

    Both China and India commenced the disengagement process from July 6 following talks between Doval and Wang who are Special Representatives for the boundary question.

    The tension in eastern Ladakh escalated manifold after the violent clashes in the Galwan Valley on June 15 in which 20 Indian Army personnel were killed. The Chinese side also suffered casualties but it is yet to give out the details. As per US intelligence reports, the Chinese army suffered 35 casualties.

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