Chinese military sources have reported that Indian soldiers fired warning shots after they crossed the Line of Actual Control (LAC) near Pangong Lake in Askai Chin region on Monday, September 7. The shots violate a long term agreement barring the use of guns along the LAC. Indian officials have not commented on the reports, which come a day after Indian military sources accused Chinese troops of kidnapping five Indian civilians near the disputed border. India has also accused Chinese troops of provocative actions in the last two weeks in the region.
Further cross border provocations are likely in the near term and clashes between Indian and Chinese troops cannot be ruled out.
China has administered Aksai Chin, including the Galwan Valley, since the conclusion of the Sino-Indian war of 1962. The Indian government disputes China's control of the area; although the Chinese and Indian governments agreed in 2005 to a resolution of the border dispute, no further progress has been made on the demarcation of the LAC. In 1996 both countries agreed to bar the use of guns and explosives along the LAC, although clashes still occur. India's recent construction of infrastructure near the LAC has acted as a point of contention between the two sides. Tensions along the border remain high following clashes which erupted in June in which 20 Indian soldiers were killed.
Those present in the region are advised to avoid the vicinity of the disputed area, monitor developments, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.
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