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Modi visits Ladakh; takes a dig at China

New Delhi: Days after a violent face-off between the Indian and Chinese armies that left 20 Indian soldiers dead, Prime Minister Narendra Modi landed in Leh today with a clear warning to China.

Taking a swipe at China, Modi said that the expansionist policies of some countries have affected world peace.

“The age of expansionism is over, this is the age of development. History has witnessed that expansionist forces have either lost or were forced to go back… The expansionist policies of some countries had affected world peace,” Modi said addressing the Indian armed forces.

The PM told soldiers posted along the Line of Actual Control that the courage they had demonstrated had sent a message to the entire world.

‘The enemy has seen your fire and fury as well… From Leh, Ladakh to Siachen and Kargil…and Galwan’s icy waters…every mountain, every peak is witness to the valor of Indian soldiers,” PM Modi said.

“You have given a befitting reply to people who attempted to conquer,” he told them before going on to deliver his direct message to China.

He also said that while India wants peace, it will give a “befitting reply” if provoked. “India’s integrity and sovereignty is supreme for us, and no one can stop us from defending it. Nobody should have any iota of doubt about this,” said Modi. “Indian troops went down fighting (“maarte, maarte mare hain”),” he had said.

Meanwhile, Modi’s visit seems to have rattled China with Zhao Lijian, spokesperson at the Chinese Foreign Ministry, stressing that both countries have been engaged in talks to lower the temperatures.

“India and China are in communication and negotiations on lowering the temperatures through military and diplomatic channels. No party should engage in any action that may escalate the situation at this point,” Zhao told a press briefing.

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