In a blunt, orchestrated and unprecedented warning, Pakistan’s civilian government has informed the military leadership of a growing international isolation of Pakistan and sought consensus on several key actions by the state.
As a result of the most recent meeting, an undisclosed one on the day of the All Parties’ Conference on Monday, at least two sets of actions have been agreed.
First, ISI DG Gen Rizwan Akhtar, accompanied by National Security Adviser Nasser Janjua, is to travel to each of the four provinces with a message for provincial apex committees and ISI sector commanders.
The message: military-led intelligence agencies are not to interfere if law enforcement acts against militant groups that are banned or until now considered off-limits for civilian action. Gen Akhtar’s inter-provincial tour has begun with a visit to Lahore.
Second, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has directed that fresh attempts be made to conclude the Pathankot investigation and restart the stalled Mumbai attacks-related trials in a Rawalpindi anti-terrorism court.
Terror attack foiled, 3 militants killed
Indian soldiers shot dead three suspected militants who tried to raid an army base in northern Kashmir on Thursday, police said, the latest in a wave of attacks that has raised tensions with neighboring Pakistan, Reuters reports.
The three men were found in an orchard near the army base in Kupwara district near the Line of Control, the de facto border that divides the Himalayan region between India and Pakistan.
Police superintendent Ghulam Jeelani said the attackers engaged in heavy firing with soldiers before they retreated from the base, the second to be attacked in days in northern Kashmir.
‘100 terrorists mobilized near LoC’
Pakistan army has mobilized about 100 terrorists across the Line of Control (LoC) to push them into India to carry out attacks on Indian defense personnel, security establishments and civilian targets in the wake of September 29 surgical strikes, intelligence agencies said, PTI reports.
India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval is said to have divulged this during a meeting of the cabinet committee on security headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Quoting intelligence agencies, Doval said Pakistan Army has activated about a dozen terror launch pads to avenge the surgical strikes.
Modi cautioned his Cabinet colleagues against creating a hysteria over the military action against terror launch pads across the LoC.
He told them them only authorized people should speak on the issue of surgical strikes and one should avoid speaking out-of-turn, sources said.
Indian army had carried out the strikes by crossing over in Kupwara sector in the Kashmir valley and Poonch in Jammu region and smashing launch pads for terrorists and killing 50 to 100 militants, according to initial reports.
Pakistan media said India was making false claims about the surgical strike and some Indian politicians too were asking the government to present proof of the operation to counter the smear campaign by Pakistan.
But a report in Indian Express on Wednesday, quoting witnesses living across the LoC, gave graphic details of the intense firing that destroyed the terrorists’ makeshift buildings in Kel, Lipa and Bhimber Gali and how the bodies of the terrorists were taken away in trucks for secret burials.
Three divisions of the army were involved in the surgical strikes and before the operation, the army teams cut off supply routes of reinforcements from Pakistani army.
Meanwhile, a Pakistani police official said at least 12 Pakistanis were killed in the surgical strikes.
An Indian TV channel Wednesday telecast a purported conversation on surgical strikes between one of its journalists, who posed as a senior Pakistani police official, and the SP of Mirpur in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir.
The SP, believing that he was talking to his superior, told him at least 12 Pakistanis, including Pakistani soldiers and Lashker-e-Taiba terrorists, were killed in Bhimber and Lipa.
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