India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has stated that the “violent face-off” on Monday night, where an Indian army officer and two army personnel were killed, “happened as a result of an attempt by the Chinese side to unilaterally change the status quo there.”
In a statement sent out by MEA’s spokesperson Anurag Srivastava added, “India and China have been discussing through military and diplomatic channels the de-escalation of the situation in the border area in Eastern Ladakh.” He added that senior commanders had a meeting on 6 June wherein they agreed on a process of de-escalation.
“While it was our expectation that this would unfold smoothly, the Chinese side departed from the consensus to respect the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Galwan Valley,” the statement stated. “[The] violent face-off happened as a result of an attempt by the Chinese side to unilaterally change the status quo there.”
The statement claimed that India and China both suffered casualties “that could have been avoided had the agreement at the higher level been scrupulously followed by the Chinese side.”
The MEA again made India’s position clear that “all its activities are always within the Indian side of the LAC [and] we expect the same of the Chinese side”.
India remained “firmly convinced of the need for the maintenance of peace and tranquillity in the border areas and the resolution of differences through dialogue. At the same time, we are also strongly committed to ensuring India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”