The Indian and Chinese Armies have started to disengage in the Gogra region of east Ladakh to restore the Line of Actual Control. It is being seen as the first major breakthrough after the latest round of talks between the two aspiring superpower neighbours.
The Indian army said in a statement that after nearly 15 months of a face-off in the Ladakh, the disengagement process was carried out over Wednesday and Thursday and the troops of both sides are now in their respective permanent bases.
“All temporary structures and other allied infrastructure created in the area by both sides have been dismantled and mutually verified. The landform in the area has been restored by both sides to the pre-standoff period,” said the army.
Experts see it as the success of the twelfth round of talks between the Corps Commanders on July 31 that were held at Chushul Moldo.
This is the 4th disengagement at the LAC in eastern Ladakh, after Galwan valley, North bank and the south bank of the Pangong Tso lake in February. Now, there is a standoff at only two spots, in Depsang and Hot Springs.
Now the agreement in the 12th round of talks would ensure that that there is no unilateral change in the status quo in this area and the LAC will be strictly observed and respected by both sides.
With this one more sensitive area of face-off has been resolved. Both sides have expressed commitment to take the talks forward and resolve the remaining issues along the LAC in the Western Sector.
The military standoff erupted on 5th May last year when the Chinese troops started to enter which led to a violent clash in the Pangong lake area and both sides gradually enhanced their deployment by rushing in tens of thousands of soldiers as well as heavy weaponry.
At this point, there are 50,000 to 60,000 troops on either side of the LAC.
The breakthrough comes a day after the Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday said the recent India-China military talks on the eastern Ladakh row were “constructive” and both sides agreed to resolve the remaining issues in an “expeditious manner”.