The Indian and Chinese troops began 'slight' disengagement on the northern bank of Pangong Tso in Ladakh to clear the 'Finger 4' area as per the consensus reached between the armies from both sides during the ninth round of military commander-level talks.
The Indian and Chinese troops have been involved in a tense border stand-off in eastern Ladakh for over nine months, with Pangong Tso being the main focus of the tussle.
"As per the plan, China will move back to Finger 8 and Indian troops will pull back to the Dhan Singh Thapa post between Finger 2 and 3. No patrolling will take place by both sides till Finger 4. This will be done in a phased manner," India Today reported quoting sources in Indian security establishment. There has been a marginal thinning of troops, and removal of tanks and weapons is also on the agenda.
The mountain spurs jutting out from the mountains to the lake are called as 'fingers'.
In a tweet, Chinese government affiliated Global Times said that Chinese and Indian armies have started disengagement.
The Chinese and Indian armies started to disengage simultaneously on Wednesday after a months-long border standoff, as Chinese experts hailed the move as a key breakthrough that will ease border tensions and hopefully lead to peace and stability. https://t.co/kOtWAnA0jTpic.twitter.com/iWfcYil7kh- Global Times (@globaltimesnews) February 10, 2021
Chinese Ministry of National Defence spokesperson Wu Qian said frontline troops of the two sides started "synchronised and organised disengagement at the southern and northern banks of the Pangong Tso Lake".
Meanwhile, the Office of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh tweeted that the minister will make a statement in the Rajya Sabha on Thursday regarding the present situation in eastern Ladakh.
Raksha Mantri Shri @rajnathsingh will make a statement in Rajya Sabha tomorrow regarding 'Present Situation in Eastern Ladakh'.- रक्षा मंत्री कार्यालय/ RMO India (@DefenceMinIndia) February 10, 2021
Violent clashes between both the sides in June last year in Galwan Valley had led to death of 20 Indian soldiers, while there were unconfirmed number of casualties on the Chinese side as well.