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Soldier dies in LoC firing

Updated July 28, 2013

ISLAMABAD, July 27: Pakistan lodged a protest with India on Saturday over an unprovoked attack from across the Line of Control (LoC) in which a Pakistani soldier was killed and another injured.

“Pakistan strongly condemns the unprovoked firing by Indian soldiers along the LoC near Rawalakot this morning which resulted in the killing of a Pakistani soldier and serious injury to another,” Foreign Office Spokesman Aizaz Chaudhry said.

The Indian government was asked to prevent recurrence of violations of ceasefire along the LoC and thoroughly probe the Saturday incident.

The soldier killed in the attack in Nezapir sub-sector was identified by the military authorities as Sepoy Asim Iqbal, a resident of Rawalpindi district, while the injured naik was identified as Mohammad Khan.

The attack occurred at 10:30am.

Meanwhile, Indian Border Security Forces in another incident resorted to unprovoked firing along the working boundary near Sialkot in the evening. No loss of life was reported.

“It is unfortunate that such an incident should have taken place at a time when the two governments are making sincere efforts towards improving relations for resolution of all outstanding disputes,” Mr Chaudhry said.

AFP adds: The Indian army said intermittent firing was continuing along the heavily militarised ‘border’ late on Saturday. “Pakistani troops started firing unprovoked in the morning, firing rocket-propelled grenades, heavy machinegun fire and small arms,” Indian defence spokesman Colonel R.K. Palta said.

“Our side retaliated in a calibrated manner and there were no casualties on our side,” he said, adding he had no comment on Pakistan’s statement that Indian firing had caused Pakistani casualties.

Tensions spiked between New Delhi and Islamabad in January and February as six soldiers were killed in exchanges along the Line of Control.

Four of the soldiers killed were from Pakistan while two were from India.

Relations between the two countries were also strained earlier this year with both sides protesting the deaths of prisoners held by the other.

The murder of an Indian prisoner in a Lahore jail was followed by the tit-for-tat killing of a Pakistani prisoner in an Indian jail.