November 2016 News

Terrorists Grouping Across LoC: India

17 November 2016
The Hindu
Kallol Bhattacherjee

New Delhi: India on Thursday lashed out at Pakistani forces for 'clear violation of the Ceasefire Agreement of 2003' and said that terrorists had begun to gather near Pakistan's forward posts. The Ministry of External Affairs protested against repeated cross-LoC infiltration attempts to a senior diplomat of the Pakistani mission on Wednesday and said New Delhi's calls for restraint had gone unanswered. 'We also conveyed our strong condemnation of the increase in concentration of terrorists observed across the Line of Control in the vicinity of Pakistani forward posts. During the last week alone, there have been 18 instances when terrorists attempted to infiltrate into the Indian side from the vicinity of Pakistani posts and also targeted Indian posts and patrols,' said MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup. Demarche issued The strong statement came a day after the Ministry summoned a senior diplomat of the Pakistan High Commission and made a demarche, or diplomatic protest, for what it described as 'continued violation of ceasefire along the Line of Control.' 'You will note that this is the third such demarche this month following the ones issued on 2nd and 9th November,' said the spokesperson. Between November 9 and 15, Pakistani firing resulted in four casualties and 25 non-fatal injuries on the Indian side and displaced people from 14 villages on the border, he said. 'We conveyed that despite calls for restraint, Pakistan forces have committed 12 ceasefire violations between 9 and 15 November during which the Pakistan Army deliberately resorted to calibre escalation by employing Artillery and 120 Millimetre Heavy Mortars against Indian posts. 'These violent acts constitute a clear violation of the Ceasefire Agreement of 2003,' said the MEA spokesperson. Indian firing The statement is significant as it comes days after Pakistan said it lost seven soldiers in reported Indian firing. 'Seven soldiers embraced shahadat at the LoC in the Bhimber sector in a ceasefire violation by Indian troops...,' Inter-Services Public Relations, Pakistan, had announced in a message on the social media platform Twitter. The funeral of the soldiers was attended by the chief of Pakistan Army General Raheel Sharif. 'Strike of Thunder' General Raheel Sharif on Wednesday oversaw a military exercise named 'Strike of Thunder' near the Punjab border and claimed that eleven Indian soldiers had died in an attack. This was, however, denied by the Indian Army. India also called for the release of Chandu Babulal Chavan, a soldier who had 'inadvertently' crossed into Pakistan six weeks ago.