June 29, 2020

Tensions Building after Border Clash between India and China

AP Photo

Tensions continue to run high along the LAC, despite agreement between military leaders.

By Brad Lendon
International Homepage Editor

China appears to have rebuilt and expanded a military camp in the Himalayas that was the site of a deadly border clash with India, satellite images show.

The images, from the US satellite operator Maxar Technologies, were taken Monday, a week after what has been described as hand-to-hand fighting with sticks and clubs left at least 20 Indian troops dead.

China has not given any casualty numbers from the clash in a river valley along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), the ill-defined and disputed border between the two powers high in the Himalayan mountains.

Beijing says the deadly clash began when Indian troops crossed into Chinese-controlled territory and tried to dismantle a tent camp erected by Chinese forces in the Galwan Valley at what is known as Patrol Point 14.

These images show the buildup at Patrol Point 14 in the Galwan Valley between May 22 (top) and June 22 (bottom). This was the site of the deadly clash between Indian and Chinese forces on the night of June 15. / Maxar Technologies

The new satellite images appear to show a large expansion of the Chinese encampment on the banks of a river since the fighting on the night of June 15.

“The small outpost … has grown hugely in size,” Nathan Ruser, a researcher at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute who first shared the images, tweeted on Thursday. “Indian troops aren’t dismantling this one.”