Pakistan ‘shoots down two Indian jets’ over Kashmir
According to media reports, Pakistan says it has shot down two Indian Air Force jets in a major escalation of the Kashmir conflict.
One plane had fallen inside Pakistani territory and two pilots had been arrested. There is no comment from India. Pakistan has denied reports one of its jets was shot down.
Both India and Pakistan claim all of Kashmir, but control only parts of it. The nuclear powers have fought three wars since independence from Britain in 1947. All but one were over Kashmir.
The aerial attacks across the Line of Control (LoC) dividing Indian and Pakistani territory are the first since a war in 1971.
They follow a militant attack in Kashmir which killed 40 Indian troops – the deadliest to take place during a three-decade insurgency against Indian rule in Kashmir. A Pakistan-based group said it carried out the attack.
Pakistan’s information ministry has published a video purporting to show one of the Indian pilots that the Pakistani military says it has captured. The pilot – who is blindfolded and appears to have blood on his face – identifies himself as Wing-Commander Abhi Nandan.
Pakistan’s assertion that it had shot down two Indian aircraft came shortly after Islamabad said its warplanes had struck targets in Indian territory.
Pakistan said it had “taken strikes at [a] non-military target, avoiding human loss and collateral damage”. Indian authorities said the Pakistani jets had been pushed back.
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