Chinese and Indian armed forces clash on border in Sikkim
Several Chinese and Indian soldiers have exchanged physical fistfights and stone-throwing in a clash on the shared border at a strategically key mountain pass near Tibet.
According to Indian officials, the clash occurred along the border near Naku La Pass in Sikkim State, at an altitude of around 5,000 meters.
Four Indian and seven Chinese soldiers were injured in the fight before the intervention of local commanders.
A total of around 150 soldiers were reportedly involved.
A statement from the Indian Ministry of Defense said: “The aggressive behavior of the two sides caused slight injuries to the troops. The two sides disengaged after dialogue at the local level”.
A border dispute sparked a brief war in 1962. The border between India and China is almost 4,000 km long and some sections are subject to a degree of ‘interpretation’.
In 2017, the two countries deployed additional troops along the border on the Dokiam Plateau when India opposed the Chinese development in a strategically key area. The following year, Chinese President Xi and Indian Prime Minister Modi issued ‘strategic directions’ to improve communication between the two countries’ armed forces to avoid a large-scale conflict.