A set of old images of Chinese soldiers escorting coffins with the remains of Chinese soldiers killed in the Korean War (1950-1953), has resurfaced and is being falsely linked to the India-China clash that took place at the Galwan Valley, Eastern Ladakh on June 15-16, 2020.
The images, which show parts of the burial ceremony of the Chinese People's Volunteers (CPV) soldiers from the Korean War, are being shared as proof of the number of lives lost in the Chinese side during the Galwan clash.
The Indian Army confirmed that 20 of the soldiers, including a commanding officer of the Bihar regiment were killed after Indian and Chinese troops clashed in an escalation of major border tensions across the Line of Actual Control (LAC). China however has not disclosed any official figures of lives lost of the Chinese troops leaving room for speculation on social media.
The post also features a screenshot of an already debunked list claiming to show 56 People's Liberation Army (PLA) casualties. BOOM fact-checked the list earlier and found that the names listed are of former PLA Generals. The viral list was created by copying names of former Chines generals available on Wikipedia.
Click here to view an archive of the post.
One image from the set viral on Facebook was also received on BOOM's helpline number for verification.
The same set of images was also used in a Hindi news publishing portal Chattisgarh Vaibhav, in an article which claimed that China lost 56 soldiers.
BOOM ran a reverse image search on the three images and found that they are part of the handover ceremony of remains of Chinese soldiers between South Korea and China that has been taking place for several years.
Image 1 and 3
The images showing soldiers escorting coffins are from Arpil, 2019, when China held a burial ceremony for soldiers killed in the Korean War. The ceremony was held in Shenyang, northeast China's Liaoning Provice on April 4, 2019. According to the caption in Xinhua Net's official website, the coffins carried remains of 10 Chinese soldiers who were killed in the war. The bodies of slain soldiers were returned by the Republic of Korea. Click here and here to access the original images.
The image of soldiers guarding the coffins, is originally a cropped version of an image from March, 2016, which shows the Chinese Ambassador to South Korea Qiu Guohong paying tribute to the remains of soldiers of the Chinese People's Volunteers (CPV) killed in the 1950-53 Korean War. The same can be seen below.
The photograph was taken during a handover ceremony at the Inchon International Airport of South Korea.In March 2016, South Korea returned remains of 36 Chinese soldiers lost in Korean War.
The 2019 handover ceremony, marked the sixth handover ceremony of mortal remains of Chinese soldiers who were killed in the Korean War. In the past, South Korea had transferred the remains of 589 Chinese soldiers, including 437 in 2014, 68 in 2015, 36 in 2016, 28 in 2017 and 20 in 2018 each.
According to a report in the Global Times, the transfer has been usually made days before Tomb-sweeping Day, the Chinese holiday for commemorating the dead, in early April.
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