Wednesday, October 27, 2010

China holds first live-fire joint drills in Tibet

China's military on Wednesday said it held its first live-fire joint ground and air drills on the Tibetan plateau, likely setting off alarm bells in nervous neighbor India.The exercises were held at an altitude above 15,420 feet (4,700 meters) and involved fighter aircraft, attack helicopters, artillery, tanks and electronic warfare units, the official People's Liberation Army Daily newspaper said.No exact locations for the exercises or other details such as numbers of troops involved were given in keeping with usual military secrecy. Almost all the vast Tibetan plateau lies at or above 13,000 feet (4,000 meters).The exercises stand to add to concerns in India over a Chinese military buildup in Tibet. The countries fought a brief but bloody border war in 1962 and continue to argue over territorial claims. More recently, New Delhi has complained that Chinese troops along the frontier have grown more aggressive and expressed concern over China's increasingly close ties to the military of India's archrival, Pakistan.

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