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Trump offers to 'mediate or arbitrate' between India and China amid face-off at LAC

In a tweet on Wednesday, Trump said he has offered to "mediate or arbitrate" the "raging border dispute" between the two countries.

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As India and China are engaged in a face-off at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh, US President Donald Trump on Wednesday said he has offered to "mediate or arbitrate" the "raging border dispute" between the two countries. 

Trump previously offered to mediate between India and Pakistan on the Kashmir issue on multiple occasions. India, however, rejected the offer as New Delhi maintains that there is no role for any third party in bilateral issues.

In a tweet on Wednesday, Trump said, "We have informed both India and China that the United States is ready, willing and able to mediate or arbitrate their now raging border dispute. Thank you!"

According to reports, Chinese troops have crossed into Indian territory along the 3,500-km-long LAC in Ladakh and North Sikkim. While the LAC is the de-facto border between India and China, there is no marked boundary or fencing along the line.

Several areas along the LAC have witnessed major military build-up by both the Indian and Chinese armies recently, including an incident of a scuffle between the troops earlier this month. 

As the tension escalates between the two nuclear-armed nations, India maintains that it is in touch with China at local and diplomatic level. 

China has claimed that its troops were responding to construction activity by Indian forces while India has said the Chinese military was hindering normal patrolling by its troops along the LAC in Ladakh and Sikkim. 

Rejecting China's claim of trespassing by Indian forces across the Chinese side, the Ministry of External Affairs said all Indian activities were carried out on its side of the border, asserting that India has always taken a very responsible approach towards border management. 

India was deeply committed to protect its sovereignty and security, it said. 

"Any suggestion that Indian troops had undertaken activity across the LAC in the Western sector or the Sikkim sector is not accurate. Indian troops are fully familiar with the alignment of the Line of Actual Control in the India-China border areas and abide by it scrupulously," MEA Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said last week. 

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