US Supports India’s Action, Efforts to De-escalate Border Situation with China

Foreign Affairs

Washington: In a counter to the Chinese intrusion into India in Tawang, US came out in support of India’s action with Pentagon Press Secretary, USAF Brigadier General Pat Ryder saying “…we will continue to remain steadfast in our commitment to ensuring the security of our partners. And we fully support India’s ongoing efforts to de-escalate this situation.”

The United States’ Department of Defence said that it continues to closely watch developments along the Line of Actual Control at the India-China border and noted that China “continues to amass forces and build military infrastructure along the so-called LAC.”

Brig. Gen. Ryder in an on-Camera Press Briefing on December 13 (local time) said that China is growingly asserting itself and being proactive in areas directed toward US allies and partners in Indo-Pacific.

Asked about the December 9 face-off between Indian and Chinese troops in the Tawang sector in Arunachal Pradesh, the spokesperson said, “The DoD continues to closely watch developments along the line of actual control at the India-China border.

“We have seen the PRC continue to amass forces and build military infrastructure along the so-called LAC. But I would defer you to India in terms of their views. It does reflect though, and it’s important to point out, the growing trend by the PRC to assert itself and to be provocative in areas directed towards US allies and our partners in the Indo-Pacific,” the Pentagon spokesperson said.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh told Parliament December 13 that Chinese troops had attempted to transgress the LAC at Yangtse in Tawang sector of Arunachal Pradesh in a bid to “unilaterally change the status quo” but were given a firm and resolute response forcing the Chinese side to retreat. In his statement in Parliament,  Singh said the face-off led to a physical scuffle that led to injuries to a few personnel on both sides but “there was no fatalities or serious casualties” to Indian soldiers.

“The Chinese side was asked to refrain from such actions and maintain peace and tranquillity along the border. The issue has also been taken up with the Chinese side through diplomatic channels,” Singh told Parliament.

On Tuesday (local time), the White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said that US is closely monitoring the situation and that Washington is ” glad to hear that both sides appear to have quickly disengaged from the clashes.”

“We are closely monitoring the situation. We encourage India and China to utilize existing bilateral channels to discuss disputed boundaries. Again, we are — we’re glad to see that there has been some disengagement on the clashes at this time,” the White House Press Secretary said.