White House says can’t confirm US provided intel to repel Chinese incursion in Arunachal

WASHINGTON, 21 Mar: The White House has refused to confirm a news report that the US provided crucial real-time intelligence to the Indian military last year that helped it successfully repel the Chinese incursions in the Himalayas.

“No, I can’t confirm that,” John Kirby, National Security Council coordinator for strategic communications at the White House told reporters at a daily news conference here on Monday when asked about the news report.

In an exclusive report, the US News said that India was able to repel a Chinese military incursion in border territory in the high Himalayas late last year due to unprecedented intelligence-sharing with the US military, an act that caught China’s People’s Liberation Army off-guard, enraged Beijing, and

appears to have forced the Chinese Communist Party to reconsider its approach to land grabs along its borders.

Indian and Chinese troops clashed along the line of actual control (LAC) in the Tawang sector of Arunachal Pradesh on 9 December and the face-off resulted in “minor injuries to a few personnel from both sides.”

“The US government for the first time provided real-time details to its Indian counterparts of the Chinese positions and force strength in advance of a PLA incursion,” the report said, citing a source familiar with a previously unreported US intelligence review of the encounter into Arunachal.

“The information included actionable satellite imagery and was more detailed and delivered more quickly than anything the US had previously shared with the Indian military,” it said.

The subsequent clash, involving hundreds of troops wielding spiked clubs and tasers, did not result in any deaths as previous encounters have; rather, it was limited to a dozen or so injuries and – most conspicuously – a Chinese retreat, the report said.

“They were waiting. And that’s because the US had given India everything to be fully prepared for this. It demonstrates a test case of the success of how the two militaries are now cooperating and sharing intelligence,” an unnamed source was quoted as saying by the daily.

The ties between India and China nosedived significantly following the fierce clash in the Galwan valley in June 2020 that marked the most serious military conflict between the two sides in decades.

India has told China that the bilateral relationship cannot be normal unless there is peace in the border areas. (PTI)