In the Himalayas, the conflict spreads between India and China

The conflict dragged on, far from the cameras, on the heights of the Himalayas, in a frozen desert. Only the winter which will close on the mountains could bring a moment of respite to the soldiers. The Chinese and Indian armies have been facing each other in Ladakh at an altitude of more than 5,000 meters for more than a year and a half. The first clashes erupted on May 5, 2020 in the Pangong Lake area and degenerated on June 15, near Patrol Point 14, in the Galwan Valley, in a fight with stones and clubs that had claimed life. to 20 Indian soldiers and, officially, four Chinese. It was the first fatal clash between the two Asian giants since 1975, a hand-to-hand fight because the two rivals have pledged, since 1966, not to use firearms.

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Beijing and New Delhi are fighting over the Line of Effective Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh, an ill-defined line of demarcation, and, despite 13 surrenders of military and diplomatic talks and an agreement signed in February, the two countries have failed. in their disengagement negotiations. Troops have indeed been withdrawn from the front lines at Lake Pangong and Gogra, but other points of friction remain, notably in Hot Springs and Depsang, and the two nuclear powers continue to deploy their forces. Beijing and New Delhi have reportedly placed between 50,000 and 60,000 troops each in the region with heavy equipment. The two countries are engaged in a race for infrastructures, bridges, tunnels, roads, to ensure the connectivity of the various sites.

Ladakh is no longer the only element of conflict. Chinese incursions have been reported on other portions of the 3,488 km long Himalayan border. On August 30, for example, around 100 Chinese soldiers entered Indian territory on horseback in Barahoti, Uttarakhand, and remained there for three hours before destroying infrastructure, including a bridge.

New Delhi weakened

For Sushant Singh, of the New Delhi Policy Research Center, “This incident marks a resumption of Chinese aggression against India. Although this is territory claimed by both parties, it is a demilitarized zone. No one in uniform can enter it. This rule was violated by the Chinese ”. This specialist in military matters estimate that “These incursions testify to the will of the Chinese army to keep the Indian army under pressure” and weaken India, already busy defending its front in Kashmir, against Pakistan.

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