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Pakistan Army warned India for ceasefire violations at loc

22 July, 2017

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ISLAMABAD / MUZAFFAR­ABAD: With the Line of Control (LoC) ablaze with gunfire exchanges that left a boy dead on Friday, the Pakistan Army warned India that its ceasefire violations would be befittingly responded.

“Pakistan Army stands by its innocent civil population and would continue to respond befittingly,” a military spokesman said as civilian casualties on the Pakistani side due to Indian shelling rose to 25 this year. Besides, 127 people have been injured in different incidents of firing.

The latest exchanges were reported from Gheekot and Mandal villages of Leepa sector where civilians were targeted by Indian forces from across the LoC. A boy lost his life and three civilians were injured.

Foreign Office spokesman Nafees Zakaria believes that the spike in LoC violations by India are aimed at covering up its continued heinous crimes against innocent civilians in occupied Kashmir and diverting international attention from it. Indian irresponsible actions, he said, posed a direct threat to the security of the region and beyond.

The military spokesman, meanwhile, said India had continued with violations despite the losses it had suffered due to the Pakistan Army’s retaliatory fire. Earlier, it was said retaliatory fire neutralised the source of fire, but the rare disclosure that the Indian Army is continuing with aggression even after sustaining loses points to Indian intransigence.

The Pakistan Army said its response to latest breaches killed three Indian soldiers and destroyed three Indian posts.

After suffering the losses, India has begun accusing Pakistan of targeting civilian population in held Kashmir.

This is the first time that India has levelled such allegations in recent years. The charge has been strongly rejected by the Pakistan Army.

The issue was raised by Indian Director General Military Operations Lt Gen A.K. Bhatt in a special hotline contact with his Pakistani counterpart Maj Gen Sahir Shamshad Mirza. The conversation was reported by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) late Thursday night.

“Pakistan Army is a professional force and considers it absolutely unethical to target the civil population more so when our own Pakistani Kashmiris live across. Pakistan Army targets only those Indian posts which initiate firing on innocent civilians,” the military spokesman said.

Meanwhile, a boy was killed and three members of his family were injured when Leepa Valley of Azad Jammu and Kashmir was hit by heavy Indian shelling on Friday.

The ‘intense’ shelling started in the area, some 100km from Muzaffarabad, by midday, said Abdul Hameed Kiani, deputy commissioner of Jhelum valley.

He said a shell landed on a house in Ruddan Gheekot village, killing 12-year-old Umair and injuring his siblings Aqsa, 10, and Uzair, 7, and uncle Shah Nawaz, 50.

The deputy commissioner feared that casualties could be higher. Mohammad Babar Mir, a resident of Gheekot, claimed that the Indian Army was using 40mm Bofors guns.

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