China has probably lost at least 40 soldiers at the border clash: Indian minister

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MUMBAI (Reuters) – China has lost at least 40 soldiers in a conflict with India at their disputed border this week, a federal government, the minister said that the nuclear weapon countries remained locked in confrontation on the first line Sunday.

FILE PHOTO: A convoy of the Indian Army moves along a highway leading to Ladakh, the Gagangeer in Kashmir’s Ganderbal district on June 18, 2020. REUTERS/Danish Ismail/Photo archives

China has not said anything about losses in the hand-to-hand combat that took place in the highly contested Galwan Valley in the western Himalayas, of which 20 Indian soldiers have been killed and at least 76 injured.

“If 20 were martyred in our (Indian) side, then there would have been at least double the number of victims on their (Chinese) side,” V. K. Singh, the minister of roads and transport, said on TELEVISION News24 in an interview aired late on Saturday.

Singh, who is a former chief of the army, have not provided any evidence to support his statement. He said that China, historically, has never accepted the victims of war, including the 1962 conflict with India.

China is state-controlled Global Times said before, there had been casualties on the Chinese side, but did not elaborate.

Singh said the Indian side had handed over the Chinese troops that had strayed into the Indian territory after the violent clashes.

India’s ministry of defence spokesman Bharat Bhushan Babu refused to comment on Singh’s interview.

The nuclear weapon Asian neighbors exchanged accusations on Saturday that the other had breached their shared de facto border, an area which, this week, became the site of their deadliest clash in a half-century.

The troops remain locked in a face-to-face in several places along the poorly-defined Line of Actual Control, despite the talks between the local commanders of de-escalation.

U.S. secretary of State Mike Pompeo criticized China for escalating tension on the border with India.

Reporting by Swati Bhat and Rupam Jain; Editing by Sanjeev Miglani and Stephen Coates

Our Principles:Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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