A video showing a group of young People's Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers sobbing is being widely circulated on social media amid ongoing tensions with India. The video was circulated along with comments that said the soldiers were crying on their way to the India-China border at Ladakh to face the Indian army.
On Sept. 20, Pakistani comedian Zaid Hamid shared the video on Facebook, which shows several PLA recruits in tears as they are being transported in what appears to be a bus. The troops can be seen struggling to sing the words to the PLA song "Green Flowers in the Army" as they become emotional in a video that was originally posted on the WeChat page of Fuyang City Weekly, but was removed shortly after.
Troops Were Informed They Were Heading to Ladakh on the Bus
The video footage was of 10 new recruits from Fuyang City's Yingzhou district in the Anhui province of China who had volunteered to serve in Tibet, which borders the disputed Galwan Valley region, according to Taiwan News. The Galwan Valley is where the standoff took place between Indian and Chinese armies in June.
The video was reportedly filmed on their way to the Fuyang Railway Station as they prepared to head to a military camp in China's Hebei Province before making their way to the border, the Taiwanese outlet added.
A Chinese netizen who goes by the handle @waynescene also reposted the video on Sunday along with the caption, "They were told that they would be going to the front lines after they got on the bus. The cannon fodder are crying!"
China Says Its Soldiers Not 'Afraid of War'
Not long after the Taiwan news outlet published the story, Chinese state-controlled media reacted strongly against the report, saying they misrepresented the emotional video involving the PLA soldiers.
"At that time, they were bidding farewell to their parents and sang the famous military song 'Green Flowers in the Army', and they sang 'Go home when you celebrate your work', completely contrary to the mood created by Taiwanese media," the nationalist tabloid Global Times said in a report on Tuesday.
The report added that although the Taiwanese news report "tried to use all kinds of explicit hints to shape the image of the PLA fighters being 'afraid of war,' when describing all the key information, the author used vague terms such as 'reported' and 'probable', which seemed very guilty."
India, China Agree to Stop Deployment of Troops
China and India have agreed to stop the deployment of additional troops to the disputed border and avoid any action that might escalate the tense situation there. The decision followed a meeting between senior military officials from both countries on Monday.
A joint press release said both sides had agreed to "avoid misunderstandings and misjudgments", and "refrain from unilaterally changing the situation on the ground."