ACROSS LOC Pakistan calls it a lie, says it was border firing
Intent for a peaceful neighbourhood should not be mistaken as its weakness... Pakistan can thwart any evil design to undermine its sovereignty. NAWAZ SHARIF, Pakistani Prime Minister
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Thursday denied that Indian troops had carried out surgical strikes across the Line of Control, saying it had responded to “cross-border fire” from the Indian side that killed two soldiers and injured nine more.
Foreign secretary Aizaz Chaudhry summoned Indian envoy Gautam Bambawale on Thursday evening and rejected the “so-called surgical strikes” and condemned what he described as “unprovoked firing” by Indian forces on the LOC, state-run Radio Pakistan said.
Chaudhry said the Pakistan military “will continue to give a befitting response to any act of aggression”. He added that India had escalated tensions on the LOC to divert attention from the “grave human rights situation” in Kashmir.
Pakistan’s civil and military leadership reacted after India’s Director General of Military Operations (DGMO) Lt Gen Ranbir Singh said Indian soldiers conducted surgical strikes on terrorist launch pads across the LOC, causing significant casualties.
The first reaction came from the Pakistan military’s media arm, which said in a strongly worded statement: “There has been no surgical strike by India instead there had been cross-bor der fire initiated and conducted by India which is existential phe nomenon.”
The military dismissed the surgical strikes as an “illusion” while defence minister Khawaja Asif referred to them as “a lie” The military also said “if there is a surgical strike on Pakistani soil same will be strongly responded”
Asif said Pakistani troops had responded to “small weapons fire in five sectors along the LOC” that killed two soldiers and injured nine others. “If India tries to do this again, we will respond forcefully,” said Asif, who had on Monday warned that Pakistan would use its nuclear weapons to annihilate India if the country’s survival was threatened.
Soldiers guard the forward posts in Hamirpur area near Bhimber Gali, close to where Wednesday’s strikes took place.