Lhasa: Chinese Military on Wednesday deployed fighter jets at Lhasa. This is the first time that massive deployment by Chinese air forces. More fighters have moved to Tibet and ‘fighter activity,’ the number of sorties by fighter planes, particularly the more modern J-11, which is a version of the Russian Sukhoi-27, is on the rise.
The number of fighter planes based in Lhasa-Gongka has gone up to 25 and 20 of them are J-11s. There are eight fighters at Hoping, three at Hotan and 12 at Kashi.
Hotan’s runways were under repair for a while but they are operational again. Five more J-11s have joined the fleet in Lhasa, raising the number of fighter jets in Tibet to 48.
Indian border guards yesterday foiled an attempt by Chinese soldiers to enter Indian territory in Ladakh, resulting in stone pelting that caused minor injuries to people on both sides.
Asked to comment on the incident,Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said, “I am not aware of the information I can tell you that the Chinese border troops are always committed to maintain peace and tranquillity of the India-China border.”
“We always patrol in the Chinese side along the Line of Actual Control. We urge the Indian side to abide by the LAC (Line of Actual Control) and relevant conventions between the two sides,” she said.
In the past too, whenever such incursions have taken place, China has always maintained that its troops were patrolling the Chinese side of the border highlighting that border is yet to be delineated as the two countries were in the process of resolving the boundary dispute. Special Representatives of China and India have held 19 rounds of talks to resolve the boundary issue.
Asked whether there is any progress to resolve the standoff at the Doklam area in the Sikkim section which has now entered the third month, Hua reiterated China’s stand that Indian troops illegally trespassed into Chinese territory and they should unconditionally withdraw. “This is pre-condition for any meaningful talks between the two sides,” she said.
However, China has been acknowledging that the talks are on through the diplomatic channels to discuss the issue.
Of the 3,488-km-long India-China border from Jammu and Kashmir to Arunachal Pradesh, a 220-km section falls in Sikkim.