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Indian Army Says Border Standoff With China Easing After Talks

Indian Army Says Border Standoff With China Easing After Talks

Narendra Mod and Xi Jinping.

Narendra Mod and Xi Jinping.

Photographer: Manish Swarup/AP Photo

Narendra Mod and Xi Jinping.

Photographer: Manish Swarup/AP Photo

India and China have started to pull back their forces along the border in the Himalyan region after talks between senior military officials, according to India’s Army Chief Manoj Mukund Naravane.

“Our borders along with China are under control,” Naravane told reporters in the northern Indian city of Dehradun on Saturday. “We have had a series” of meetings with Chinese commanders and “as a result of this a lot of disengagement has taken place.”

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is keen to avoid a confrontation with China at a time when his handling of the Covid-19 pandemic has come under criticism at home. The nuclear-armed neighbors share a 3,488 kilometer (2,167 mile) unmarked border. Troops, tanks and armored personal carriers were on either side at multiple locations after the armies clashed several times in disputed areas.

The Asian countries have taken steps to de-escalate the six-week standoff after the countries’ senior army commanders held talks this month.

“We are hopeful that through this continued dialogue” all perceived differences will be set to rest,” Naravane said. “We are disengaging in a phased manner, we have started from the north from the Galwan river valley where a lot of disengagement has happened.”

The army chief did not comment on the standoff at Pangong Tso, a glacial lake at in south-western Ladakh. The two armies clashed at Pangong Tso on May 5, leaving scores injured.

— With assistance by Pratik Parija