China was informed about drone that crashed, says India

Jon Howard
December 8, 2017

"An Indian UAV, which was on a regular training mission inside the Indian territory, lost contact with the ground control due to some technical problem and crossed over the LAC (Line of Actual Control) in the Sikkim Sector", the Indian military said in a statement quoted in local media. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said the country has lodged a diplomatic protest to India over the drone violating Chinese sovereignty.

The loss in communication was due to a technical error, which is being investigated, the statement said, adding that Indian border personnel, following standard protocol, immediately informed their Chinese counterparts.

"The exact cause of the incident is under investigation".

Geng did not specify when the drone crashed, but said it had occurred "recently". "In response, the Chinese side reverted with the location details of the UAV".

Wang's visit to New Delhi is expected to be followed by China's top diplomat Yang Jiechi later this month to attend the 20th round of China-India boundary talks.

The claim was first made by Zhang Shuili, deputy head of the combat bureau of Chinas' Western Theater Command's joint staff department, who said an Indian UAV had recently intruded into China's airspace and crashed.

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Beijing then went on to say that the People's Liberation Army had identified and conducted a verification of the drone. India and China were locked in a 73-day-long standoff at Doklam, an area claimed by both Bhutan and China.

India is likely to push for naming Pakistan-based terror groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e- Mohammed in the communique to be adopted at the Russia-India- China (RIC) trilateral meeting here on Monday, citing a similar move by the BRICS grouping.

The Indian Army and the China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) had, on August 28, chose to disengage their troops from the disputed area.

Recently, on Wednesday, China's Global Times accused India of attempting to influence the U.S. against China's increasing naval capabilities by projecting the Chinese People Liberation Army (PLA) navy as a direct rival of the Americans. There are no new developments at the face-off site and its vicinity since the August 28 disengagement.

The 15th RIC meeting will be held in New Delhi India on December 11.

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