Beijing: The Chinese Army, it seems, will not desist from needling India. A Chinese military spokesperson was quoted in State-controlled Global Times as saying well past midnight that Indian troops had again illegally crossed the Line of Actual Control and “outrageously fired warning shots on Chinese border patrol soldiers” who were about to negotiate.
The Chinese troops were forced to take countermeasures to stabilize the situation, it is claimed. The Indian troops crossed the LAC in the western section of the China-India border, into the Shenpao mountain region near the south bank of Pangong Tso Lake, claimed Senior Colonel Zhang Shuili, a spokesperson of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA), Western Theatre Command. Calling it a "serious provocation of a very bad nature", he said,
"We request the Indian side to immediately its stop dangerous actions". The PLA Western Theatre Command troops will firmly fulfil their duties and resolutely safeguard national territorial sovereignty, Zhang asserted. The alleged action at the Line of Control comes ahead of the foreign minister level talks with China, which are scheduled to be held on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, China has brushed off concerns over the whereabouts of the five ‘missing’ youths from Arunachal Pradesh and further provoked India, saying it has never recognised the north-eastern state which it claims is part of south Tibet.
"China's position on the eastern sector of the boundary with India, or the southern part of Tibet, is consistent and clear," foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian told a media briefing in Beijing, adding they had never recognized the so-called "Arunachal Pradesh". "I'm not aware of the situation you mentioned," the spokesperson said when asked about any updates about the missing Indian nationals.
Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju took to Twitter on Sunday to say the Indian army has already sent a hotline message to the PLA establishment at the border point in Arunachal Pradesh and that a response is awaited. Two members from the group which had gone for hunting in the jungle returned home and informed the families of the other five that they had been whisked away by the Chinese troops from Sera-7, an Army patrol zone located about 12 km further north of Nacho.
The All Arunachal Pradesh Students' Union condemned the Chinese statement dubbing the state as part of "South Tibet". AAPSU president Hawa Bagang and General Secretary Tabom Dai in a joint statement said, "People of Arunachal Pradesh are proud Indians and staunch nationalists. We don't need any recognition or validation from a foreign entity.’’
"Instead of issuing misleading statements, the Chinese government should direct its armed forces to immediately release the five civilians." The AAPSU termed the incident as "unfortunate" and called upon both the Centre and the state government to ensure early and safe release of the youths. In March, a 21-year-old man was abducted by the PLA from the Asapila sector near the McMahon Line. While his two friends managed to escape, Togley Sinkam was taken away at gunpoint, his family had said. After 19 days in captivity, the youth was released by the Chinese army.