China protests India's drone 'intrusion' near border

The UAV was on a regular training mission inside Indian territory before losing contact with ground control before crossing over the Line of Actual Control

New Delhi said the drone crossed the border by mistake, and China had been informed.

Chinese border troops identified the device and were dealing with the matter in a "professional and responsible manner", the official Xinhua News Agency cited the deputy chief of the Chinese military's Western Theater Command, Zhang Shuili, as saying. They fought a brief but bloody frontier war in 1962 and engaged in a 10-week standoff this summer high in the Himalayas over the Doklam plateau that is claimed both by China and India's ally Bhutan.

In an advisory sent to troops at the end of November, Indian authorities warned soldiers that Chinese apps transmit user data back to servers located in China, and the Chinese government may use data collected by these services to pinpoint their location across the border.

China said the drone crashed in "recent days" but didn't say where.

India's Heron unmanned aerial vehicle went missing about two weeks ago over an area about 20 km from the Indian border inside Doklam, the site of the 73-day-long stand-off between the Indian and Chinese armies. Sources said India will, through diplomatic channels, seek its return.

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"I know that China has lodged solemn representation to the Indian side", he said.

In remarks carried widely by state media outlets, Zhang stated that the Chinese border forces had conducted "verifications" with regards to the drone.

"China asked the Indian side to stop the activities of the devices near the border and work with China to maintain peace and tranquility of the border areas", Geng added.

Observers also said the visits of Wang and Yang to India were the first since Xi was confirmed as China's strongest leader in decades and his pet trade and infrastructure plan, known as the "Belt and Road Initiative", was enshrined in the Communist Party's constitution.

"The Indian UAV which was on a regular training mission inside the Indian territory lost contact with the ground control due to some technical problem and crossed over the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Sikkim sector".

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