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Will the border conflict between India and China result in a death before 2021?

The border between India and China has been disputed since at least the 1962 Sino-Indian war. Despite the ceasefire declared by China ending the war the same year and diplomatic efforts to define a border, it seems that the issue is still not settled to both sides’ satisfaction. Over the years, tensions have continued to persist resulting in incidents such as clashes in 1967 and a military standoff in 2017.

On May 5th of this year, tensions flared again when Chinese and Indian soldiers clashed along the western border. A video was shared on social media showing soldiers engaging in fistfights and stone-pelting. Indian media claims that 72 Indian soldiers were injured in the incident.

On May 10th, near the disputed eastern border, Chinese soldiers crossed over and shouted at Indian forces, telling them the area didn’t belong to them. This escalated to violence and 11 soldiers were injured.

On May 24th, 1000 Chinese forces crossed 2-3km into territory that India claims is theirs. India has also sent troops to the area, and it appears the standoff is ongoing with both sides continuing to fortify their positions.

This question asks if the situation will continue to escalate and eventually result in a death, and resolves positively if there is a credible media report that all of the following criteria are met:

  • A person is killed as a result of a conflict between Indian and Chinese military forces within 100 miles of the China-India border. If it’s not clear if the death was a result of a military conflict, it will be judged by the metaculus admins.
  • In areas where the border between China and India is disputed, two lines will be used. In the west, China’s 1962 claim line will be used. In the east, the McMahon line will be used. These lines are drawn in Google Maps, and Google Maps will be used for measurements. The red lines on these images disambiguate the border lines in areas where it is disputed.
  • The death must occur on or before 2020-12-31 UTC.


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