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US to participate in military exercise near disputed border between India and China

You United States are expected to participate in a joint military exercise with India less than 100 kilometers from the South Asian country’s disputed border with India. China .

The military exercises will be held in mid-October at an altitude of 3,048 meters at Auli in the Indian state of Uttarakhand and will focus on high-altitude warfare training, according to a senior Indian army official with knowledge of the matter.

Auli is about 95 kilometers from the Line of Royal Control (LAC), an inhospitable piece of land where the disputed border between India and China is roughly demarcated.

The exercises will be held as part of the 18th edition of an annual joint exercise known as “Yudh Abhyas” – or “Practice Warfare”.

Relations between India and China have been strained since a bloody clash between their soldiers in the Himalayas in June 2020 that left at least 20 Indian soldiers and four Chinese servicemen dead.

Tensions have increased even more recently with China’s construction of a bridge across Lake Pangong Tso, which lies along the border – a move condemned by the Indian government as an “illegal occupation”.

During a visit to India this year, US Army Pacific Commander Charles Flynn described China’s military build-up near the disputed border as “alarming.”

Asked about the joint exercises, a US Department of Defense spokesperson told CNN that the partnership with India was “one of the most important elements of our shared vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific region”.

“An important element of this broader effort includes training exercises and events and Yudh Abhyas is one of those annual bilateral exercises designed to improve interoperability and enhance our respective capabilities to address a range of regional security challenges,” the spokesperson said.

real control line

The Line of Actual Control, the de facto vaguely defined border between India and China, emerged from the 1962 Sino-Indian border war, which was triggered by long-standing historic territorial disagreements.

Its precise location can be blurry, and there is still dispute between China and India over where one country ends and the other begins.

Any military provocations between the two countries could have serious consequences. Both have nuclear weapons.

Border tensions escalated between the two countries after soldiers fought with fists, stones and bamboo sticks studded with nails in a bloody brawl that killed at least 20 Indian soldiers in June 2020 in the Galwan Valley, near Aksai Chin, a area controlled by China but claimed by both countries.

While tensions have since eased, both sides maintain a large troop presence in the border region, increasing the risk of a possible miscalculation in the event of sudden and unexpected clashes.

Source: CNN Brasil

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