ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Air Force thwarted an early morning incursion into its airspace Tuesday by Indian fighter aircraft forcing them to flee, the military spokesman said.
The Indian aircrafts intruded from Muzafarabad sector, Major General Asif Ghafoor said in a tweet at 6:36 am.
He said the "timely and effective response from Pakistan Air Force" forced the intruding aircraft to "release payload in haste while escaping, which fell near Balakot."
He said "No casualties or damage" were reported due to the dropping of "payload."
Pictures released by the Director General Inter Services Public Relations Major General Asif Ghafoor show a burnt out steep mountain side with no sign of any damage to any property, apart from a few burnt out pine trees.
The military spokesperson rejected Indian propaganda that some targets were hit.
He clarified: “Indian aircrafts’ intrusion across LOC in Muzafarabad Sector within AJ&K was 3-4 miles. Under forced hasty withdrawal aircrafts released payload which had free fall in open area.”
The spokesperson added: “No infrastructure got hit, no casualties. Technical details and other important information to follow.”
Foreign Office Summons Indian Envoy
Pakistan summoned Indian Acting High Commissioner to foreign office and strongly condemned the Indian violation of Pakistan's sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The Acting Foreign Secretary summoned the Indian Acting High Commissioner and strongly condemned the Indian violation of Pakistan's sovereignty and territorial integrity when at approximately 0254 hours today, eight Indian aircraft were effectively intercepted by Pakistani Air Force Jets and forced to scuttle back, while randomly releasing their ordnance which landed in an uninhabited remote area.
Baseless, reprehensible Indian claims of targeting a large terrorist camp and resultant causalities to placate Indian domestic audience and electioneering were strongly rebutted, the statement says.
The Acting Foreign Secretary categorically stated that Indian aggression was a threat to regional peace and stability and would get a befitting response by Pakistan at a time and place of its choosing.
The Acting Foreign Secretary also condemned the baseless Indian allegations against Pakistan's involvement in the recent attack in Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir and reiterated Pakistan's principled position of continuing support to the peaceful political struggle of the Kashmiri people for the realization of the right to self-determination as enshrined in the UN Security Council Resolutions.
Military Spokesperson's Press Conference
Military spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor has said Pakistan Armed forces will befittingly respond to Indian intrusion and now India should wait for our surprise respond.
Addressing a press conference to inform the nation about the Indian intrusion, Director General Inter Services Public Relations (DG ISPR) rejected Indian claims of killing over 200 militants.
Major General Asif Ghafoor said Prime Minister Imran Khan has asked the armed forces, elements of national power and the nation to get ready for any eventuality.
DG ISPR said “Now it’s our time to respond. The response will come at the time and place of our choosing.”
He added Indian should wait for our response, we will respond surprisingly and differently.
Pakistani response will be in all domains, said the DG ISPR.
Pakistan rejects claims
A special meeting of the National Security Committee chaired by the Prime Minister was held at Prime Minister’s office today. The NSC strongly rejected Indian claim of targeting an alleged terrorist camp near Balakot and the claim of heavy casualties. The Forum concluded that India has committed uncalled for aggression to which Pakistan shall respond at the time and place of its choosing.
UN chief on Indian violation of airspace
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday appealed to Pakistan and India for "maximum restraint" in the wake of the airspace violations by Indian warplanes along the Line of Control (LoC).
"The Secretary-General is closely following the situation," Stephane Dujarric, the spokesperson, said in response to a question at the regular noon briefing at the UN Headquarters in New York.
To a question about India's claims of heavy casualties on the Pakistani side, Guterres said the UN had nothing on it.
China urges restraint
China urged India and Pakistan on Tuesday to "exercise restraint" after New Delhi claimed its warplanes targeted a militant camp, in a move that sent tensions soaring between the arch-rivals after Pulwama attack.
An eyewitness has exposed Indian claims of major destruction inside Pakistan. Talking to Reuters news agency, he said that they heard four loud bangs in the early hours of Tuesday but reported only one person wounded by bomb shards.
Nawaz Sharif condemns
Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has condemned the Indian violation of Pakistan's airspace, Maryam Nawaz Sharif said on Twitter after meeting her father at the Kotlakhpat Kail on Tuesday.
Indian media channels have resorted to false propaganda by making use of an old video that shows Indian Air Force conducting an aerial intrusion into Pakistani territory. The video it appears is at least three years old.
Government has convened a joint sitting of the parliament to discuss the situation that has emerged after India violated Pakistan's airspace by sending warplanes across the Line of Control (LoC).
During the National Assembly session former Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif called for boycotting of OIC over their invitation in India's External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj as 'Guest of Honour' at the meeting in UAE.
Indian Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale in a press conference claimed to have struck a Jaish-e-Mohammad camp inside Pakistan but had to face embarrassment when he had no answers to journalists’ probing questions and left the briefing after reading out a statement.
Prime Minister Imran Khan has convened a high-level meeting to discuss the situation.
'Pakistan reserves right to respond'
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said Pakistan reserves the right to respond Indian intrusion as it is violation of Line of Control (LoC). He was speaking to media persons after an important meeting at the Foreign Office.
Joint Parliamentary session
Senator Sherry Rehman said that Indian government is in-fact trying to win over the disgruntled voters ahead of polls. ‘The international community is not very happy on Indian hysteria.’
The government should convene a joint session of the parliament so that a strong message is conveyed to New Delhi that Pakistan is united.
An emergency meeting is underway at the Foreign Office by the Minister for Foreign Affairs Shah Mehmood Qureshi today to discuss the situation.
Chaired by the foreign minister, the meeting is also attended by Pakistan High Commissioner in India.
Talking to Geo News senior analyst Mazhar Abbas said Pakistan's stance towards Indian war mongering and anti-Pakistan approach has been very matured and sensible. Prime Minister Imran Khan's offer of investigation into the Pulwama attack was very timely and much needed.
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