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India cautions China over PLAAF's violations in Ladakh

India cautions China over PLAAF's violations in Ladakh
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India has cautioned China against air space violations and breach of confidence building measures in eastern Ladakh after a series of provocative actions that included sorties by fighter jets close to contested areas on the Line of Actual Control.

A special round of talks was held between representatives of the Indian Air Force and the Peoples Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) at the Chushul-Moldo border meeting point in eastern Ladakh on Tuesday to address the issue, which started off with an air defence exercise conducted by China in late June.

The talks were also attended by a two-star officer from the Indian Army and his Chinese counterpart. Sources said that India raised strong objections to repeated attempts by PLAAF to probe defences by flying close to the border in violation of an agreement that fighters should not operate within a ten kilometer distance of LAC.

It is learnt that the Chinese side raised the topic of increased surveillance and tracking assets established by the Indian Air Force along the border. China was cautioned that dangerous tactics like flying close to contested areas need to be curbed to maintain peace and tranquility, as was decided by the senior political leadership during border discussions.

This is the first time that dedicated talks on air violations were held between the two sides on the border since tensions escalated in May 2020, when China moved thousands of troops to contested areas in eastern Ladakh. The issue was also raised by India during the 16th round of corps commander level talks held on the border last month.

Chinese fighter jets continued to breach norms set to maintain harmony on border even after the corps commander level border talks described as 'forward looking.' The violations of confidence building measures picked up pace in late June when PLAAF started conducting a large-scale air defence exercise.

The violations are being closely monitored by the IAF and appropriate measures are being taken. It has moved several of its advanced fighters to forward bases and has stepped up combat sorties around Ladakh since the violations started. They include enhanced night patrols by frontline fighters.

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