Monday, 22 April 2019

Pakistan Air Force downs two Indian fighter jets, 2 pilots arrested

RAWALPINDI: In a response to Indian Line of Control (LoC) violation, Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has destroyed two Indian fighter jets on Wednesday morning.

According to details, the wreckage of one aircraft fell in Central Kashmir’s Budgam while the other’s in Pakistan territory. Two of the pilots have been killed in the incident.

Meanwhile, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General (DG) Major General Asif Ghafoor said Pakistan Air Force engaged six targets from across the Line of Control in Occupied Kashmir this morning.

He said Pak armed forces have capability, will, resolve, people backing and all resources. But being a responsible state, we decided that we will not aim any military target. We also wanted to ensure that no human loss or collateral damage is done during our engaging the targets.

He said we selected six targets but we hit the areas close to them while keeping a safe distance, in order to demonstrate our capability. This action was purely in self-defense and with no aggressive designs.

The reaction came after Indian aircrafts intruded into Pakistan airspace and released payload in haste near Balakot. However, they scrambled back on PAF’s timely and effective response.

Following the violation, Pakistan decided to respond to India at its own choice of a time and a place.

“Our ground forces arrested two pilots; one of them was injured and has been shifted to CMH [Combined Military Hospital] and, God-willing, he will be taken care of,” said the army official.

“The other one is with us.”

“Today’s action was in self defence; we do not want to claim any victory. The way we set out target and made sure that there were no collateral damage — the in-built message was that despite out capability, we look towards peace,” said the army spokesperson.

“Today morning, Pakistan Air Force engaged six targets at the LoC. Because we are a responsible state and want peace, we decided that we will not use any military target.

“As a result of engaging our target, no human life was affected. Staying within our jurisdiction, six targets were locked. And we carried out the strike,” said the army spokesperson.

“Pakistan is not pushing the environment towards war,” he made it clear, adding that Pakistan deliberately and thoughtfully avoided escalation.

“If that were the case [that Pakistan wanted to escalate], we could have easily engaged the [military] targets, which our air force had locked. That would have resulted in human casualties and collateral damage as well.

“We [instead] engaged a nearby open space where there were no human lives or military posts. We deliberately avoided the escalation. We only wanted to demonstrate that we could have easily taken the original target, which was their administrative setup and military post. But we did not do that,” he reiterated.

The military spokesperson also rubbished reports that a PAF F-16 had been shot down inside occupied Kashmir.

“Indian media was saying that they shot down a Pakistani F-16. Firstly, Pakistan did not use F-16s in the entire action and there is no news that a Pakistan plane was downed,” he said.

The spokesperson also publicly announced the closure of the Pakistani airspace.

“The airspace is closed due to the [security] environment,” he said.

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