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China Urges India to Withdraw From Disputed Region, Stages Drills

FILE - Chinese soldiers guard the Nathu La mountain pass, between Tibet and the tiny northeastern Indian state of Sikkim, July 6, 2006.

China is calling on India to immediately withdraw its troops from disputed territory in the Himalayas following a report that Chinese troops recently held live firing drills in the region.

Foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said Tuesday that Indian forces had to leave the area to avoid an "escalation of the situation."

Chinese state broadcaster CCTV reported late last week that an army brigade equipped with rocket launchers, heavy machine guns and mortars recently practiced a simulated assault on an enemy position in Tibet. It did not say exactly when or where the drills took place.

Beijing and New Delhi have engaged in weeks of saber-rattling as officials from both sides talk up a potential clash even bloodier than their 1962 war that left thousands dead.

The border disputes between China and India.
The border disputes between China and India.