India says three soldiers killed in standoff with Chinese troops

SRINAGAR, India (AP) — At least three Indian soldiers, including a senior army officer, were killed in a confrontation with Chinese troops along their disputed frontier high in the Himalayas where thousands of soldiers on both sides have been facing off for over a month, the Indian army said yesterday.

The incident is the first confrontation between the two Asian giants in which soldiers have died since 1975.

The Indian army said in a statement that a “violent faceoff” took place in Galwan valley in the Ladakh region on Monday night “with casualties on both sides”.

“The loss of lives on the Indian side includes an officer and two soldiers,” the statement said. “Senior military officials of the two sides are currently meeting at the venue to defuse the situation.”

China, for its part, accused Indian forces along their Himalayan border of carrying out “provocative attacks” on its troops, leading to “serious physical conflicts” between the sides.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian gave no details on any casualties on the Chinese side, but said yesterday that China had strongly protested the incident while still being committed to maintaining “peace and tranquility” along the disputed and heavily militarised border.