India-China standoff: China detains bloggers for questioning official version of Galwan clash

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: Feb 22, 2021, 12.32 PM(IST)

China releases propaganda video of Galwan Valley clash Photograph:( Others )

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China had announced military honours for the four soldiers who had lost their life and a regimental commander who was injured in the clash with Indian soldiers at Galwan Valley in June, 2020.

Three Chinese bloggers were detained by authorities in China for questioning the official Chinese version of the Galwan Valley clash against Indian troops which took place on June 15 last year, reports said.

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China's state-run Global Times said "following the arrests of two web users who slung mud at the People's Liberation Army(PLA) heroes who were killed in the Galwan Valley border clash with India, a blogger in southwest China's Sichuan province 'confessed' his misdeeds for having insulted the martyrs has been arrested."

The move comes after China acknowledged the casualties in Galwan. On Friday, China had announced military honours for the four soldiers who had lost their life and a regimental commander who was injured in the clash with Indian soldiers at Galwan in June, 2020.

Iu Ziming, an investigative journalist formerly employed with the Economic Observer was among the three people arrested. Ziming had questioned the official Chinese account of the Galwan clashes. On Weibo, the Chinese Twitter alternative, Ziming suggested that the casualties would have been higher than the officially reported figure.

He further suggested that some of the soldiers would have also died coming to the aid of injured troops and they in his view would have suffered losses as well. Ziming also questioned the time taken by Beijing to make the fatalities public. He said that Beijing took almost eight months to make the losses public while India was prompt in disclosing the fatalities.

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“In India’s view they won and paid a lesser price," Ziming said. After his arrest, the Nanjing police posted a message that said Ziming was arrested for "releasing false information and smearing the four heroes who died and one who was wounded when dealing with the Indian military's illegal trespassing."

The journalist's account was suspended immediately. Another blogger going by the last name Chen was among the three arrested. He was detained in Beijing for comments made during a group chat. According to Chinese police, they received a complaint of a 28-year-old publishing insulting comments about the PLA soldiers on WeChat

The comments reportedly sparked fury on the group, Global Times reported. The Beijing police took action and said that as per Chen's statement the comments were made "to vent his emotions."

A 25-year-old blogger with the surname Yang was the last among the three detained. Yang was reported by internet users for posting "smears" against the Chinese troops. "Under social pressure, Yang confessed to the police the following day," China's state-run newspaper said

As per the police, he has been handed seven-day detention.

China had announced it was pulling out of forward bases along the Line of Actual Control(LAC) in eastern Ladakh, the disengagement was completed last week.

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