On December 9, 2022, a clash broke out between Indian and Chinese forces in the Tawang area of Arunachal Pradesh, a state in far-northeast India that is claimed by China. Since the tragic clashes of June 2020, when Chinese and Indian soldiers fought in hand-to-hand combat in the Galwan Valley of Ladakh, this incident is considered to be the first between the two countries.
The Indian army said on 12 December 2022 that this clash had resulted in injuries, making it the most serious event along their disputed Himalayan frontier since the soldiers from the two major countries were killed and captured in June 2020. They believe that People’s Liberation Army PLA forces approached the border in the Tawang district of Arunachal Pradesh. The Indian army’s statement further emphasised that local commanders met to discuss the conflict as both parties swiftly evacuated the region.
Rajnath Singh, the Defence Minister of India, while addressing the Indian Parliament, accused Chinese troops of entering Indian Territory. He claimed that China is “unilaterally altering the status quo.”
The spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Wang Wenbin, on the other hand, emphasised that he had no details while responding to India’s charges. He described the border situation as “stable”.
“Through diplomatic and military channels, the two sides have consistently maintained effective communication on border-related matters”, Wang emphasised.
Additionally, the incident resulted in the deaths of twenty Indian and four Chinese soldiers. Tens of thousands of soldiers from both countries were deployed along the Line of Actual Control, supported by artillery, tanks, and fighter jets.
However, China and India, for a long time, have had a variety of conflicting claims along their border, which stretches nearly the entire Himalayan range. During the deadly, high-altitude struggle between the two countries in 1962 over the disputed territories, Arunachal Pradesh was taken over by China before being returned to India. Arunachal Pradesh, according to China, is a part of South Tibet.