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"Since the China-India boundary in the Sikkim sector has been delimited, India has infringed upon China's territorial sovereignty, which has jeopardized peace and stability in the border regions", Geng said. The source said the drone had gone missing earlier this week, but the exact date of the incident was not revealed.

The world's two most populous countries are addressing the issue in accordance with established protocols; through institutional mechanisms set up to address situations that occur along the India-China border.

The Indian Army uses the Heron drones to monitor the real-time movement of the Chinese People's Liberation Army.

"An 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 (to) the LAC in the Sikkim Sector", it said in a statement released in Delhi.

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.

The claims do not include details about the timing or specific location of the incident. China and India have tried to develop two-way ties in recent years but there is still deep distrust over the border dispute.

There has been no immediate response to the Chinese allegation from India.

"The action of the Indian side violated China's sovereignty and it's not conducive to the peace and tranquility of the border area". "We will fulfil our mission and responsibility and defend China's national sovereignty and security resolutely", Zhang said.

The armies of India and China were engaged in a 73 day long standoff in Dokalam after Indian troops stopped Chinese soldiers from building a key road in the area. There are no new developments at the face-off site and its vicinity since the August 28 disengagement. It said only that the drone crashed in "recent days" and did not give a precise time or location. Dokalam is located in the Sikkim section of the India-China border.

China has claimed that an Indian drone "invaded" its airspace before crashing across the Sino-Indian western border.


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