India, China Faceoff Ends In DBO Sector

India, China Faceoff Ends In DBO Sector

5 May 2013
The Daily Excelsior
Fayaz Bukhari

Srinagar: The 20 days of faceoff between People’s Liberation Army of China and Indian Army ended in Despang valley of Daulat Baig Oldi sector in Leh this evening after both the armies pulled back from their stand off point, a top security forces official said here. Sources said that decision to retreat from their positions was taken in the 5th Flag meeting that was held at Chushul at around 1 p.m. today. “Indian Army was represented by a Brigadier level officer while China was represented by a Colonel level officer”, sources added. Sources said that the flag meeting observed that the two armies are at an eyeball to eyeball and it may lead to a clash at any time. “To avoid LAC flare up, it was decided that both the armies will move backwards to avoid any clash”, sources added. “Our troops have moved 1 kilometre backwards from the position they were on since April 16. Chinese troops have also moved away from their position they were holding on since April 15 when they intruded in Indian Territory”, said an Army officer. This has eased the tension in the DBO sector after Chinese PLA intruded in Indian Territory on April 15. Earlier yesterday evening for the first time since the PLA incursion in DBO sector last month, China initiated a flag meeting in Chusul sector of Leh that ended in a dead lock. “During the fourth flag meeting that was held last evening at Chushul, Indian Army suggested simultaneous retreat of both PLA and Indian Army from Despang valley in DBO sector where the PLA is camping at Despang bulge, 19 kilometres inside Indian Territory”, sources said. Sources said that yesterday both the armies agreed for holding frequent flag meetings in Leh for resolving the issue of the Chinese incursion and Chinese concerns regarding constructions by Indian Army and cross LAC movement of Indian civilians. The Indian Army was directed by the Government against any misadventure along LAC in Leh. “The Government has directed that Chinese Army should not be confronted anywhere along LAC, said Army sources. The Government has told Army that the issue of Chinese incursion has been taken up at political level with Chinese Government and it will be resolved politically and diplomatically. Army sources said that since China initiated flag meeting for the first time and it seemed that political pressure exerted by Government of India was showing some results which finally led to end of the faceoff this evening. The Chinese PLA made 19 kilometres intrusion into Indian territory in DBO sector annexing around 800 square kilometres on April 15. Indian Army also moved in next day and camped some 300 meters away from the PLA held positions in Despang valley bulge. The PLA initially set up 4 tents and later increased the number to 11 and they have also brought two vehicles to the camping site besides sniffer dogs. The PLA strength was estimated to be around 50 men.