For the first time since the Galwan Valley clashes in June 2020, China has officially admitted casualties of five military officers and soldiers near the Line of Actual Control (LAC). PLA Daily, official paper of People’s Liberation Army (PLA) reported on Friday that the Central Military Commission (CMC) of China has recognised frontier officers and soldiers for their sacrifice.
The CMC awarded Qi Fabao, the regimental commander from the PLA Xinjiang Military Command, the title of “Heroic regimental commander for defending the border,” Chen Hongjun with “Hero to defend the border”. CMC also awarded first-class merit to Chen Xiangrong, Xiao Siyuan and Wang Zhuoran, reported Global Times.
In the worst border conflict in the last 45 years, 20 Indian soldiers died. While India had immediately unveiled the details of casualties, China hadn’t revealed exact number casualties.
Global Times, a subsidiary of CCPs mouthpiece, cited PLA Daily report saying,”Five Chinese frontier officers and soldiers stationed in the Karakoram Mountains have been recognized by the Central Military Commission of China for defending national sovereignty and territorial integrity in the border confrontation with India, which occurred in the Galwan Valley in June 2020.”
The PLA Daily report also read “Since April 2020, relevant foreign military personnel violated the previous agreement… they trespassed the border line to build roads and bridges and intentionally incited troubles, changing the status quo along the border… they even violently attacked Chinese soldiers that were sent for communication,” quoted Global Times. The “foreign military” here refers to Indian Military.
This news comes at the time when India and China have agreed to begin a “synchronised disengagement” of troops from the North and South bank of Pangong Tso lake in Ladakh. The first phase of disengagement has begun and the 10th meeting of Corps Commanders has to be held by February 21.
China has maintained rhetoric of India as an aggressor in the border clashes.
“The facts show to the international community that the responsibility of the deadly skirmish in the Galwan Valley falls on the Indian military, and the Chinese military had to fight back when facing challenges,” said an article from Global Times.
Speaking to Global Times, Qian Feng, director of the research department at the National Strategy Institute at Tsinghua University, stated that China unveiled the details of the incident to refute previous disinformation that stated China suffered greater casualties than India or China incited the incident.