The strained relations between India and Pakistan further deteriorated after India conducted an unauthorised airstrike on what it claimed was a camp of the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorist group, located across the so-called Line of Control (LoC) separating the Indian- and Pakistani-controlled parts of Jammu and Kashmir.
The air forces of India and Pakistan engaged in a dogfight on 27 February that led to conflicting reports from the two sides about the loss of one or two Indian jets and one Pakistani F-16. Pakistan captured an IAF pilot, but later released him as "a peace gesture".
The Pakistan military has said that India has finally accepted the truth regarding the IAF's 26 February Balakot strike.
Earlier, Pakistan denied loosing or even scrambling any F-16 jets for a dogfight with the Indian Air Force on 27 February. Responding to the contradictory claims from New Delhi, Islamabad noted that it was "immaterial" whether it had used F-16s or JF-17. At the same time, Pakistan is only allowed to use the American aircraft to fight terrorism.
India’s armed forces previously showed parts of an AMRAAM medium-range missile allegedly launched from a Pakistani Air Force F-16 that was recovered in the Indian-administered part of Kashmir following a dogfight on 27 February. Islamabad has consistently denied having either scrambled or lost US-built fighter jets in the aerial combat.
The report comes as heavy cross-border firing and shelling continues between India and Pakistan, which have seen another wave of escalation in the seven decades-long conflict since mid-February.
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The United States and India during a counterterrorism working group this week urged Pakistan to take verifiable action against terrorists in its country, the Department of State said in a press release on Friday.
ISLAMABAD (Sputnik), Valentina Shvartsman - Pakistan is ruling out the possibility of using its nuclear weapons and sees them as more of deterrence tool to prevent actual wars, spokesman for the Pakistani Army Maj. Gen. Asif Ghafoor told Sputnik in an interview.
The report comes as India and Pakistan remain at odds over a 26 February air raid by IAF on a suspected Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist camp in Pakistan in response to a deadly suicide attack on a convoy of Indian soldiers. India insists that the strike killed at least 250 terrorists, while Pakistan denies the existence of militant camps altogether.
Relations between India and Pakistan have been strained of late over incidents near the border in the Jammu and Kashmir region. Late in February the Pakistani Air Force announced it had downed two Indian jets following an air raid by the Indian Air Force against an alleged terrorist camp on Pakistan's soil.
Tensions between New Delhi and Islamabad culminated on 27 February, when the two sides’ warplanes engaged in an air battle over Kashmir just a day after India’s airstrike on an alleged jihadist camp on the Pakistani side of the Line of Control. The dogfight led to the downing of an Indian Air Force MiG-21 and a Pakistani F-16.
While Pakistani PM Imran Khan has won accolades for facilitating de-escalation of tension with India by unconditionally freeing the captured Indian fighter pilot and by acting against terror outfits, the Indian foreign minister has questioned Khan’s propriety by asking if he would be willing to hand over the terror mastermind Masood Azhar to India.
Earlier this week, Indian defence scientists had successfully tested guided a Pinaka rocket, a weapon system designed to conduct precise strikes at distances of up to 90 kilometres.
Over the last several weeks, the Indian Air Force has repeatedly reported downing Pakistani drones that allegedly invaded India's airspace in what New Delhi regards as reconnaissance missions.
The New York Times came under sharp attack once again after an article on India’s general election described the 14 February Pulwama terrorist attack as an “explosion” – a slip which was then quietly changed to “bombing”.
Pakistan on Monday issued a warning to India not to undertake any misadventure in view of the upcoming national elections in the country. India had earlier asserted that it is maintaining an optimal level of military preparedness to tackle any eventuality.
The terror Attack in Pulwama (Kashmir), which left 40 Indian soldiers dead spiralled into a serious conflagration between India and Pakistan. Following the attack, India launched an aerial attack and dropped bombs on alleged terror hideouts in Pakistani territory, resulting in retaliation by the Pakistan Air Force.
Indian Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale, who is on a three-day visit to the US, is likely to discuss bilateral, regional and global issues of common interest with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Several forays into Indian airspace have been made by Pakistani drones all along the western international border between the two countries in recent weeks following an Indian air strike against alleged terror camps at Balakot in Pakistan.
The developments come shortly after India reiterated that it had "eyewitness accounts" and "electronic evidence" to corroborate claims that Pakistan had scrambled US-built F-16 fighter jets for aerial combat with the Indian Air Force in late February - an allegation vehemently denied by Islamabad.
The statement comes weeks after India accused Pakistan of harbouring terrorists and having a “direct hand” in the deadly suicide bomb attack on the Indian paramilitary police force in Kashmir in mid-February. Islamabad, for its part, has vehemently denied the allegations and arrested over 40 terrorists earlier this week.