Galwan Valley Clash: 20 Indian soldiers killed in 'violent faceoff' with Chinese forces

This is the first violent faceoff on the India-China border in which casualties have been reported since 1975.

About 20 Indian soldiers, including an army officer, were killed in a fierce clash with Chinese forces at Galwan Valley in Ladakh, according to an official statement.

An official statement issued by the Indian Army on late Tuesday night stated that "17 Indian troops who were critically injured in the line of duty at the standoff location and exposed to sub-zero temperatures in the high altitude terrain have succumbed to their injuries. Indian Army is firmly committed to protect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the nation". 

The army statement added, "Indian and Chinese troops have disengaged at the Galwan area where they had earlier clashed on Monday night".

Earlier in the day, the Army had said that an Indian Army officer and two jawans were killed in a ‘violent faceoff’ with the Chinese troops at Galwan Valley in Ladakh.

"On the late-evening and night of 15th June, 2020 a violent face-off happened as a result of an attempt by the Chinese side to unilaterally change the status quo there. Both sides suffered casualties that could have been avoided had the agreement at the higher level been scrupulously followed by the Chinese side," the Army statement read.

The Army had confirmed in the morning that an Indian Army officer and two jawans were killed in a ‘violent faceoff’ with the Chinese troops at Galwan Valley in Ladakh, on Monday night.

"During the de-escalation process underway in the Galwan Valley, a violent faceoff took place yesterday (Monday) night with casualties. The loss of lives on the Indian side includes an officer and two soldiers. Senior military officials of the two sides are currently meeting at the venue to defuse the situation," the Army stated.

This is the first violent face-off on the India-China border in which casualties have been reported since 1975. In 1975, four Assam Rifles troopers were ambushed by the Chinese soldiers on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Arunachal Pradesh.

The two armies have been locked in a standoff on the border for weeks after scuffle between the Indian and Chinese soldiers at Pangong Tso in Ladakh and Sikkim’s Nakula were reported.

For the past one-and-half month, the Indian and Chinese troops have been engaged in a series of face-offs in the Galwan Valley.

First Published:June 16, 2020, 2:50 p.m.