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Pakistan to take all measures to deter any aggression against its population in future: ISPR

23 September, 2017

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Friday conveyed India that it will continue to take all necessary measures to deter any aggression against its population in future.

“Indian DGMO was conveyed unflinching resolve of Pakistan Army to ensure security of its population and it shall continue to take all necessary measures to deter any such aggression in future,” the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said in a statement.

A special hotline contact was established between Pakistani and Indian Director Generals Military Operations (DGMOs) on Friday where Islamabad raised the issue of deliberate targeting of civilians at the Line of Control and Working Boundary. “[Pakistan conveyed that the] violation clearly undermines all existing understandings on the issue,” the statement said.

The development came as the death toll from Indian firing along Working Boundary in Charwa and Harpal sectors since Thursday reached six. An army statement said that 26 civilians were also injured in the Thursday’s shelling in Chappar, Harpal and Charwa sectors.

Those killed included four women while 15 women and five children were among the injured, according to the ISPR. Pakistan paramilitary troops befittingly responded to Indian posts targeting civil population, the statement said.

It is the second time Indian forces fired into areas along the Working Boundary in 10 days.

Earlier in the day, the Foreign Office summoned Indian High Commissioner Gautam Bambawale to condemn the unprovoked ceasefire violations by Indian troops in Charwa sector, near the Working Boundary on September 21, the Foreign Office said in a press statement.

According to the statement, in 2017 alone Indian troops have carried out more than 870 ceasefire violations along the Line of Control (LoC) and the Working Boundary, resulting in the death of 38 civilians and injuries to 142 others.

“The deliberate targeting of civilians is contrary to human dignity and against international human rights laws,” the press release said.

According to the Foreign Office, Acting Foreign Secretary Aitzaz Ahmed urged the Indian envoy to respect the 2003 ceasefire agreement and investigate the rising number of violations. “[The Indian side should] instruct the Indian forces to respect the ceasefire — in letter and spirit,” the press release quoted Ahmed as saying.

He also urged the Indian side to permit the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan to play its mandated role, in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions.

Meanwhile, Core Commander Gujranwala Lt Gen Iqramul Haq on Friday visited the area affected by the Indian troops’ firing, ISPR said in a separate release.

According to the ISPR, Lt Gen Haq was briefed about ceasefire violations during the visit. He also visited the injured at the Combined Military Hospital in Sialkot.

Director General Punjab Rangers Major General Azhar Naveed Hayat Khan visited the sectors where India committed unprovoked ceasefire violation.

The ISPR said the DG met troops and appreciated their effective response. “He also visited the families affected by recent Indian ceasefire violations and assured them that these are always responded to effectively,” it said.

Earlier this month, a five-year-old girl was killed in Azad Jammu and Kashmir when an Indian soldier opened fire across the LoC.

The orphan was killed when a single bullet fired by an Indian soldier hit her as she stood in the courtyard of her house in Polas village of Abbaspur sector in the southern Poonch district.

Protests were held in the area against the apathy of the state and the government towards the plight of the people living along the LoC after the incident.

More recently, an elderly man was killed in a cross-border exchange of fire.

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi told the UN General Assembly on Friday that India ‘frequently violates the ceasefire along the Line of Control in Kashmir to divert the world’s attention from its brutalities’.

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