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China, India agree to disengage forces after deadly clash

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BEIJING

Chinese and Indian military commanders have agreed to disengage their forces in a disputed area of the Himalayas following a clash that left at least 20 soldiers dead, both countries said Tuesday.

The commanders reached the agreement Monday in their first meeting since the June 15 confrontation, the countries said.

Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said “the two sides had a frank and in-depth exchange of views on the prominent issues in the current border control and agreed to take necessary measures to cool down the situation.”

The Indian army said in a statement that “commander-level talks … were held at Moldo in (a) cordial, positive and constructive atmosphere. There was mutual consensus to disengage.”

Zhao denied apparent speculation by an Indian government minister that 40 Chinese troops had died in the June 15 clash.

“I can tell you responsibly that it is false information,” he said at a daily briefing.

India has said that 20 of its soldiers died. China has not released any information on casualties on its side.

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