Line of Actual Control

The Line of Actual Control (LAC) is a notional demarcation line[1][2] that separates Indian-controlled territory from Chinese-controlled territory in the Sino-Indian border dispute.[3] The term is said to have been used by Zhou Enlai in a 1959 letter to Jawaharlal Nehru.[4] It subsequently referred to the line formed after the 1962 Sino-Indian War and is part of the Sino-Indian border dispute.[5]

Line of Actual Control between China and India (map by the CIA)
The western portion of the Line of Actual Control, separating the Eastern Ladakh and Aksai Chin. In the southern Demchok region, only two claim lines are shown (map by the CIA)

It is different from the borders claimed by each country in the Sino-Indian border dispute. The Indian claims include the entire Aksai Chin region and the Chinese claim include Arunachal Pradesh. These claims are not included in the "actual control".

The LAC is generally divided into three sectors:[3]

The term "line of actual control" originally referred only to the boundary in the western sector after the 1962 Sino-Indian War, but during the 1990s came to refer to the entire de facto border.[6]