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De-escalation of troops in Ladakh likely to go beyond October, say sources

Leh: The de-escalation of troops in Ladakh may go beyond October this year, according to sources in the Indian Army stationed at the Galwan Valley. The stand-off between India and the People's Liberation Army (PLA) in eastern Ladakh is now in its ninth week with diplomatic talks taking place between officials across the border but have not yielded fruit, said the Indian Army personnel while speaking to Millennium Post.

Dialogues between the two foreign ministers, three rounds of Corps Commander-level talks and other discussions at the diplomatic and military levels have failed, leading to a stand-off that is unlikely to be resolved in the next three months, according to another source in the Indian Army.

"In the third round of table talks with China it was agreed that a gradual troop disengagement would take place in the friction points in the Galwan Valley, hot spring areas of eastern Ladakh but the ground reality is different," said the personnel on account of anonymity.

At Pangong Tso where the PLA has built a large number of fortifications and are dominating the area between 'Finger 4 to Figure 8' since May, there has been no sign of de-escalation while the Indian Army has also deployed troops and taken other measures (specifics cannot be mentioned due to national security).

According to a report by CGTN, China's main public broadcaster and part of state-owned China Media Group, China had moved 5,000 additional troops to the Pangong Lake area around May 25, after the second scuffle at Naku La in North Sikkim, the first being at Pangong Tso on May 6.

Families of Indian soldiers — who are deployed in Ladakh — have said their sons will not be returning anytime soon. The details of jawans cannot be mentioned. Defence sources have also confirmed that the build-up of the PLA at Finger 4 area occurred after May 25 and neither side has made any move to de-escalate, even after the third Commander-level talks on June 30, with both commanders agreeing to de-escalate the frontline troops.

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