Pak FM calls emergency meeting after IAF air strikes in PoK

Last Updated: Tue, Feb 26, 2019 12:49 hrs
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Islamabad: Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi on Tuesday convened an emergency meeting at the foreign office in Islamabad to discuss the situation Indian Air Force carried out aerial strikes at major terror camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. According to Radio Pakistan, the meeting is being attended by former foreign secretaries and senior ambassadors.

The air strike, in which 12 Mirage 2000 jets took part, was carried around 3:30 am, according to the sources. The jets dropped 1000 Kg bombs on terror camps across the LoC (Line of Control), completely destroying them, sources added. Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) control rooms were also destroyed in the strikes.

The Indian action came 12 days after Pakistan-based JeM carried out a terror attack on a CRPF convoy in Pulwama in Kashmir, killing around 40 personnel and injuring five others.

The terror attack had led to nationwide outrage, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi had vowed to punish those behind the attack. Entire world community expressed solidarity with India after the deadly terror attack.

The US said it supports India's "Right to self-defence" in the back of the attack.

Here is the statement by Foreign Secretary on 26 February on the Strike on JeM training camp at Balakot.

This organization, which is proscribed by the UN, has been responsible of a series of terrorist attacks including on the Indian Parliament in December 2001 and the Pathankot airbase in January 2016.

Information regarding the location of training camps in Pakistan and PoK has been provided to Pakistan from time to time. Pakistan, however, denies their existence. The existence of such massive training facilities capable of training hundreds of jihadis could not have functioned without the knowledge of Pakistan authorities.

India has been repeatedly urging Pakistan to take action against the JeM to prevent jihadis from being trained and armed inside Pakistan. Pakistan has taken no concrete actions to dismantle the infrastructure of terrorism on its soil.

Credible intelligence was received that JeM was attempting another suicide terror attack in various parts of the country, and the fidayeen jihadis were being trained for this purpose. In the face of imminent danger, a preemptive strike became absolutely necessary.

In an intelligence led operation in the early hours of today, India struck the biggest training camp of JeM in Balakot. In this operation, a very large number of JeM terrorists, trainers, senior commanders and groups of jihadis who were being trained for fidayeen action were eliminated. This facility at Balakot was headed by MAULANA YOUSUF AZHAR (alias USTAD GHOURI), the brother-in-law of MASOOD AZHAR, Chief of JeM.

The Government of India is firmly and resolutely committed to taking all necessary measures to fight the menace of terrorism. Hence this non-military preemptive action was specifically targeted at the JeM camp. The selection of the target was also conditioned by our desire to avoid civilian casualties. The facility is located in thick forest on a hilltop far away from any civilian presence. As the strike has taken place only a short while ago, we are awaiting further details.

The Government of Pakistan had made a solemn commitment in January 2004 not to allow its soil or territory under its control to be used for terrorism against India. We expect that Pakistan lives up to its public commitment and takes follow up actions to dismantle all JeM and other camps and hold the terrorists accountable for the actions.

New Delhi

February 26, 2019