HomeWorld NewsG20 host India started military exercise near China border.

New Delhi:

India on Monday began major military exercises, including in the disputed border area with China, that will continue during the G20 summit in New Delhi, which will not be attended by President Xi Jinping.

A defense official said the 11-day exercise named “Trishul” or trident was “an annual training exercise” in the northern areas bordering Pakistan and China. AFPHe declined to be named as he was not authorized to speak to the media.

India has been wary of its northern neighbor’s growing military aggression and their shared 3,500-kilometre (2,200 mi) border has been a perennial source of friction.

Tensions escalated again last week when a Chinese map claimed land that Indian officials say is theirs, including the area they fought in 2020.

Since then thousands of troops have gathered on both sides of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) that divides them.

Also read: India lodges strong protest with China over map showing ‘India’s territory’

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and China’s Xi held a rare face-to-face meeting in South Africa last month.

But a foreign ministry spokeswoman in Beijing said on Monday that Chinese Premier Li Keqiang would attend the G20 summit on September 9-10.

The Modi government has invested billions of dollars in connectivity projects along the border to boost civilian presence and set up new paramilitary battalions.

India also seeks to develop closer ties with Western countries, including fellow Quad members the United States, Japan and Australia, who are also wooing New Delhi as an alternative to China.

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