India, China agree to disengage at Pangong lake: Rajnath

New Delhi: India and China have reached an agreement on disengagement in the north and south banks of Pangong Lake in eastern Ladakh, said Defense Minister Rajnath Singh in the Upper House of Parliament on Thursday, making it clear that India has not conceded anything during these talks.

Chinese troops will move back to Finger 8 and Indian troops will pull back to the Dhan Singh Thapa post between Finger 2 and 3 of the north bank of Pangong Tso, said Singh adding that there would be temporary moratorium on military activities, including patrolling to the traditional areas.

The minister said: “The Chinese side will keep its troop presence in the North Bank area to the east of Finger 8. Reciprocally, the Indian troops will be based at their permanent base at Dhan Singh Thapa Post near Finger 3.”

The minister said that both the countries also agreed to have a temporary moratorium on military activities on both sides of the North Bank, including patrolling the traditional areas.

Patrolling will be resumed only when both sides reach an agreement in diplomatic and military talks that would be held subsequently. The minister said a similar action would be taken in the South Bank area by both sides.

On August 30, India had occupied critical mountain heights on the southern bank of the Pangong Lake like Rechin La, Rezang La, Mukpari, and Tabletop that were unmanned till then. India also made some deployments near the Blacktop. The dominance at these peaks allowed India to dominate Spanggur Gap under Chinese control and also the Moldo garrison on the Chinese side.

As per the minister, Indian troops have now to withdraw from these heights also.

He said that the disengagement is the result of a well-thought out approach and sustained talks with the Chinese side.

The minister also informed the House that it has also agreed to convene the next meeting of the senior commanders within 48 hours after the complete disengagement in the Pangong Lake area so as to address and resolve all other remaining issues.

Image courtesy of (File photo)

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