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Pakistan military shoots down Indian 'spy drone'

Updated July 15, 2015

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ISPR handout released July 15, 2015 purportedly shows the Indian 'spy drone' shot down by the armed forces.
ISPR handout released July 15, 2015 purportedly shows the Indian 'spy drone' shot down by the armed forces.

ISLAMABAD: An Indian spy drone has been shot down by Pakistani military forces along the Line of Control (LoC) in Bhimber, Azad Kasmir, according to Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) statement.

According to the military, the drone had violated Pakistani airspace after which it was targeted by Pakistani forces and brought down for "violation of Pakistan's territorial integrity".

The military maintains that the 'spy drone' is used for aerial photography.

Meanwhile, Islamabad has summoned the Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan T C A Raghavan to lodge protest over intrusion of its airspace by the Indian spy drone today near the Line of Control.

“The Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan has been summoned to the Foreign Office on Thursday,” Foreign Office spokesperson Qazi Khalilullah said.

In July, another drone had crashed near the working boundary in Shakargarh sector, which was taken into custody by Pakistani security forces. The drone was operated by Pakistan Rangers, it was later clarified.

Earlier in May, a pigeon which crossed the Indo-Pak border into India's Pathankot area was captured and detained for being a 'suspected spy'.

Read: 'Spy pigeon' detained in India after crossing border from Pakistan

A stamped message and a wire-like object on the 'intruder', which landed in Manwal village situated four kilometers from the Indo-Pak border, raised suspicions of the security agencies in India. The bird was taken to a veterinary doctor where it underwent an x-ray and medical examination.

This is not the first spy drone shot down in Pakistani territory originating out of India. In 2002, Pakistan Air Force shot down a spy drone near Kasur. Military officials claimed at the time that it was an Israeli operated drone flying out from Indian territory.

Also read: Indian troops resort to unprovoked firing along working boundary

Instances of unprovoked firing across the Indo-Pak border have also occurred frequently over the years. The latest such incident happened yesterday when Indian troops resorted to unprovoked firing along working boundary.

These violations of Pakistan's sovereignty come after a thaw in relations with India was observed after the meeting between Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi at Ufa.

Further reading: Back in Pakistan, opposition leaders unimpressed with Modi-Nawaz icebreaker

The Himalayan territory of Kashmir, which is the main contention, between the two countries, is divided between India and Pakistan by the UN-monitored de facto border of LoC. The territory is claimed in full by both the countries.