Pakistan’s Prime Minister calls for an emergency cabinet meeting after India’s claims of surgical strikes along the de-facto border between the two countries. Pakistan has denied the incursion, saying there had only been an exchange of fire. This is the latest military and diplomatic escalation of the ongoing conflict in Kashmir.
Pakistani Prime Minister Mohamad Nawaz Sharif called for an emergency cabinet meeting on Friday, following claims from India of a number of surgical strikes along the de-facto border between the two countries.
Pakistan’s military denied any incursion, but did confirm two of their soldiers were killed in clashes with Indian troops, and promised a “forceful response” if there were any repeat operations. The country’s foreign ministry also issued a statement, accusing India of “deliberately” escalating tensions.
India maintains the operation took place, and was backed up by credible intelligence that militants were planning to carry out attacks on cities in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir.
Some reports suggest a number of villages along the border are being evacuated. This latest escalation comes less than two weeks after 18 Indian soldiers were killed in an attack by armed militants on a base outside of Srinagar, the capital of Indian-administerd Kashmir. The attack was the deadliest in decades, and sparked a new war of words between India and Pakistan.
Kashmir has been disputed between India and Pakistan since 1947, after the end of the British rule of the subcontinent and the following partition of the British Indian Empire into India and Pakistan. Three wars have been fought over the territory, the last conflict taking place in 1999.