India Summons Pakistan Envoy Over Killing of Civilians in Cross Border Firing

© AP Photo / Channi AnandIn this Dec. 22, 2013 photo, an Indian army soldier stands guard along barbed wire near the Line of Control (LOC), that divides Kashmir between India and Pakistan, at Krishna Ghati (KG Sector) in Poonch, 290 kilometers (180 miles) from Jammu, India
In this Dec. 22, 2013 photo, an Indian army soldier stands guard along barbed wire near the Line of Control (LOC), that divides Kashmir between India and Pakistan, at Krishna Ghati (KG Sector) in Poonch, 290 kilometers (180 miles) from Jammu, India - Sputnik International
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India has claimed that 40 border outposts were targeted by the Pakistan Rangers on Wednesday in comparison to 24 on Tuesday, indicating an escalation in tensions at the border. As a precautionary move, all villages within a three-kilometer radius from the border are being vacated.

New Delhi (Sputnik) — New Delhi has summoned Pakistan's Deputy High Commissioner to India Syed Haider Shah and lodged a strong protest with Pakistan against the continuous ceasefire violations in Jammu and Kashmir and also against the targeted killings of civilians by the Pakistani forces along the Line of Control (de-facto border) and the International Boundary. India says it is especially concerned in light of the death of an seven-month-old infant after being caught in firing by the Pakistani rangers from across the border. 

"The Deputy High Commissioner of Pakistan, Syed Haider Shah was summoned and a strong protest was lodged at the loss of life of a seven-month-old infant in unprovoked ceasefire violations by Pakistan forces on May 21, 2018, in Bhimber sector across the Line of Control in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir," India's Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement.

A Pakistan army soldier stands guard at hilltop post at a forward area on the Line of Control (LOC), that divides Kashmir between Pakistan and India. (File) - Sputnik International
Broken Ceasefire, Broken Lives: Civilians in Indo-Pak Crossfire Decry Apathy
It was conveyed that the deliberate targeting of innocent civilians, who are located away from the forward line of defenses, by Pakistan forces using small arms and high caliber weapons is highly deplorable and condemned in the strongest terms, according to the MEA statement.

"Targeting of innocent civilians including young children is against all established humanitarian norms and professional military conduct. Pakistan authorities were called upon to investigate into such heinous acts of killing innocent civilians and instruct its forces to desist from such acts immediately," the statement added.  

India has alleged that Pakistani forces have engaged in more than 1,088 ceasefire violations at the Line of Control and International Boundary so far during 2018 resulting in the deaths of 36 Indians and 127 injuries.

Indian Border Security Force (BSF) soldiers patrol along the Pargwal area of India-Pakistan international border in Akhnoor, Jammu and Kashmir, India (File) - Sputnik International
Cross Border Fire Between Indian, Pakistani Troops Claims 8 Civilian Lives
At least twelve Indians have been killed and nearly sixty injured in Jammu and Kashmir as intermittent cross-border firing continued for the tenth day. Five civilians were killed and nine others injured on Wednesday as Pakistani Rangers continued to target border outposts at Jammu, Kathua and Samba sectors.

A day ago, one civilian was killed and 18 persons were injured in RS Pura and Ramgarh sectors.

"Pakistani side fired 80mm and 120mm mortars, along with heavy machine guns and targeted 24 border outposts and civilians areas. Our forces retaliated with equal measure," Manoj Yadav, Jammu based Border Security Force spokesman said on Tuesday.

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