–Pakistan Army soldier, two civilian women martyred in unprovoked Indian firing on Kailer and Rakhchikri sectors
–FO tells Indian envoy New Delhi can’t divert world’s attention from grave human rights abuses in IOK by ratcheting up tension on LoC
RAWALPINDI: At least three people lost their lives, including a Pakistan Army soldier, as a result of unprovoked Indian firing along the Line of Control (LoC), the de facto borderline between India and Pakistan, the Inter-services Public Relations (ISPR) said on Thursday.
According to a statement by the military’s media wing, Indian troops targetted military checkpoints in Kailer and Rakhchikri sectors with “automatics and heavy weapons”, resulting in the martyrdom of Lance Naik Ali Baz.
The ISPR said Pakistan Army responded effectively, resulting in heavy losses to Indian troops.
Separately, in the Rakchikri sector, Indian forces targeted the civilian population in which a 16-year-old girl and a 52-year-old woman were killed while a 10-year-old boy and a 55-year-old woman received injuries.
FO SUMMONS INDIAN DIPLOMAT:
Meanwhile, the Foreign Office (FO) summoned Indian Charge d’Affaires Gaurav Ahluwalia to register Pakistan’s strong protest over ceasefire violations by Indian occupation forces along the Line of Control (LoC) resulting in martyrdoms and serious injuries to innocent civilians.
In 2020 alone India has committed 919 ceasefire violations and deliberately targeted innocent civilians living close to LOC in Azad Kashmir with artillery fire, heavy-caliber mortars and automatic weapons.
Condemning the targeting of innocent civilians by the Indian occupation forces, Director General South Asia Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri underscored that such senseless acts are in clear violation of the 2003 ceasefire agreement.
The widespread disregard by India for international human rights and international norms are further vitiating the tense environment, and are posing a serious threat to regional peace and security. He said by raising tensions along LOC and Working Boundary, India cannot divert attention from the grave human rights situation in the Indian Occupied Kashmir.
Chaudhri called upon the Indian side to respect the 2003 Ceasefire Understanding; investigate this and other such incidents of deliberate ceasefire violations and maintain peace along the LOC and the WB. He also urged the Indian side to allow United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan to play its mandated role as per United Nations Security Council Resolutions.
On Wednesday, Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa termed India’s provocative actions a threat to regional peace and stability as the FO summoned a senior New Delhi representative to convey Pakistan’s protest over the ceasefire violations in Rakhchikri sector. The violations were denounced as “senseless acts”.
His statement had come after a woman was martyred and a minor girl was wounded on Monday due to unprovoked fire at Pakistan’s civilian population along LoC.
Tensions continued to persist between Pakistan and India despite the outbreak of Covid-19. ISPR DG Major General Babar Iftikhar last week told a news conference that since the outbreak of coronavirus in Pakistan on February 26, as many as 456 ceasefire violations by Indian army were detected.
On Tuesday, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) slammed India in its report over the treatment of Muslims and other minorities, designating it as a “Country of Particular Concern” for “engaging in and tolerating systematic, ongoing, and egregious religious freedom violations.”
“We are seeing impunity for violence by non-state actors committed against religious minorities (in India),” USCIRF chair Tony Perkins said.