1 dead, 5 injured in cross-border firing in AJK

Published October 2, 2017
Pakistan Army said it had destroyed two Indian outposts in Rakhchikri sector in response to the attack. Video: ISPR

Indian troops allegedly shelled border villages across the Line of Control (LoC) in Azad Jammu and Kashmir's (AJK) Haveli district on Monday morning, leaving an elderly man dead and five others ─ including a woman and her son ─ injured, according to reports.

"They [Indian troops] resorted to shelling at about 6am in Nezapir and Digwar sectors, using both small and heavy arms," Chaudhry Kashif Hussain, Haveli’s deputy commissioner, told Dawn by telephone.

"It is intermittent but fierce," he added.

Hussain said shelling had so far left a 70-year-old man identified as Muhammad Deen dead and his 25-year-old son Muhammad Jamil injured in Digwar village.

In the same village, Tasneem Bibi, 34, her 12-year-old son Aqib, and Muhammad Javed, 35, were also injured, he added.

He said one Wali Mohammad was injured in the village Keirni in Nezapir sector.

The injured persons were being evacuated to a military-run health facility in Forward Kahuta, the district headquarters of Haveli, he said.

DC Hussain said that soon after the beginning of shelling he had ordered the closure of all education institutions in vulnerable areas to avert any casualties of students and teachers.

"Since there is no let up in the shelling, exact details of losses cannot be ascertained immediately," he said.

Residents said panic had gripped the areas along the LoC due to intense shelling from across the divide.

"Since 6am no one has been able to sleep in the vulnerable villages," one resident told Dawn on condition of anonymity.

In an evening press release, Inter-Services Public Relations, the army's media wing, issued a video saying it had destroyed two Indian outposts in Rakh Chikri sector, which is in the Haveli district, in response to the attack. The army said the two outposts had been targeting the civilian population on the Pakistani side of the border.

2 killed, nine injured in Poonch, claims Indian army

A 10-year-old boy and 15-year-old girl and injuring nine other civilians on the Indian side, officials said.

The boy and girl were killed in cross-border firing allegedly by Pakistani soldiers in Poonch sector in India-held Kashmir, police said, adding that the injured included a 5-year-old girl.

Indian military spokesman Col Nitin Joshi alleged that Pakistani soldiers targeted several posts with "unprovoked" automatic gunfire and mortar shells.

On Friday, two civilians and a soldier were killed, and another three soldiers injured in Nezapir sector of Haveli district by heavy Indian shelling.

Indian Deputy High Commissioner summoned

The Foreign Office summoned the Indian Deputy High Commissioner and condemned the alleged unprovoked ceasefire violations by the Indian forces in Rukh Chakri and Rawalakot Sectors on September 30 and October 2.

“This is the fifth ceasefire violation by the Indian forces in the past 12 days,” read a statement issued by the Foreign Office.

Despite calls for restraint, India continues to indulge in ceasefire violations. In 2017 to date, Indian forces have carried out more than 900 ceasefire violations along the Line of Control and the Working Boundary, it added.

With additional input by Naveed Siddiqui.

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