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China suggests measures to ease tension in Ladakh

Beijing has suggested a couple of steps to ease tensions along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh.

These steps include withdrawing tanks and artillery guns from the conflicted areas back to the peacetime locations.

They  suggested that the Indian troops vacate strategic heights in the southern bank of Pangong Tso lake and make finger 4 in the northern banks away from both the troops.

These proposals give China a tactical advantage over their counterparts which is accentuated by China doing extensive construction activities in forward locations for troops to stay and to store equipment brought in for the winter.

Similarly, India has also been doing construction in the forward locations for troops in the high altitude region, where temperature drops to minus 30 degree Celsius.

Sources in the Defense told The Print that many of China’s demands which were made over a period of time were rejected by India. On 12 October, the last Corps Commander level meeting was held in which the Chinese side presented a proposal to ease tensions. Since then China has refused to finalize the next round talk date.

India has demanded that the disengagement process should take place from all the friction points, including the Depsang plains. However, China is concentrated only on the Southern banks of Pangong Tso. It is only offering partial withdrawal from northern banks.

A source said that the proposal put forward by the Chinese will benefit them and is aimed at only getting them a tactical advantage.

The Chinese have asked us to withdraw first from the Southern Banks which are a strategic point. After that, they will withdraw from the Black Top and its surrounding area.

India is making a point that why should we first withdraw from the strategic heights which were occupied by us as a counter to the Chinese aggression. India has clearly told that the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) first occupied our areas and they should withdraw first.

The other demand of the Chinese is to pull back tanks and artillery guns to around 10 to 20 kilometres back. India rejected this as if the condition worsens then both the parties will need to get back tanks and artillery guns. In that case, China will be at an advantage as they have better infrastructure and planer terrain on their side which will advantage them in terms of time taken to get back tanks and artillery guns.

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