India-China standoff in Sikkim: Beijing conducts military exercises simulating battle scenarios in Tibet

Amid the Sikkim standoff, the Chinese army is carrying out exercises simulating real battle scenarios at high-altitude areas in Tibet, testing new equipment, including a light battle tank.

The exercises were being carried at an altitude of 5,100 metres, the Chinese language service of the state-run Xinhua news agency reported from the Tibetan capital Lhasa.

Besides testing the new equipment, the exercises involve conducting live firing exercises.

The exercises also involve combat operations command, combat synergies, live fire shooting training, and comprehensive inspection of arms integration, the report said. The simulation also involves offensive and defensive training.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

Last week, Chinese defence spokesman Colonel Wu Qin told that the trials of the tank, reportedly weighing about 35 tonnes, were taking place during military exercises. Xinhua has also released photos of the exercises on its website.

The exercises were being held in the backdrop of heightened India-China tensions at Doka La area in the Sikkim sector.

Meanwhile, China on Wednesday accused India of "trampling" on the Panchsheel principles and asked New Delhi to "correct its mistakes" as soon as possible by pulling back troops.

"I want to point that the relevant actions by the Indian side violated the purposes and principles of the UN Charter in defiance of the international law and international norms," Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Gen Shuang said.

Defending China's road-building which India and Bhutan have objected to, Geng claimed on Wednesday that the Indian side "is actually misleading the public" by saying that the incident took place at the tri-junction point.

In view of the rising border tension, China on Wednesday also denied of a sooner Narendra Modi-Xi Jinping meet.

"The atmosphere is not right for a bilateral meeting between President Xi and Prime Minister Modi," a Chinese foreign ministry official said ahead of the G20 Summit in the German city of Hamburg from Friday.

Earlier, there were reports that Modi and Xi may meet on the sidelines of the G20 Summit to resolve the standoff.

China and India have been engaged in a standoff in the Doka La area near the Bhutan tri-junction for the past three weeks after a construction party of the Chinese army attempted to build a road.

Since the standoff on 6 June, when the People's Liberation Army (PLA) destroyed bunkers of the India Army claiming the area belonged to China, Chinese media have carried several pieces warning India for escalating border tension and "reminding" the Indian Army about the 1962 war.

China's state-run media had on Wednesday also quoted Chinese analysts as saying that Beijing would be forced to use a "military way" to end the standoff in the Sikkim sector if India refuses to listen to the "historical lessons" being offered by it.

With inputs from PTI

Updated Date: Jul 07, 2017 06:58 AM

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