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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Tuesday hit back at threats by Indian Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, said that any Indian misadventure would not go unpunished, and rejected allegations that the attack on military camp in Jammu was handled from Pakistan.

“Any Indian aggression, strategic miscalculation, or misadventure regardless of its scale, mode, or location will not go unpunished and shall be met with an equal and proportionate response,” Defence Minister Khurram Dastagir Khan said in response to a statement by his Indian counterpart.

After visiting Sunjuwan in India-held Jammu, where a militant attack on a military camp had left six soldiers and a civilian dead, Sitharaman had accused Pakistan of helping Jaish-e-Mohammed militants launch the attack and warned that the neighbour “will pay for this misadventure”.

Mr Dastagir responded by saying: “Pakistan will pay India in its own coin in case of any Indian misadventure.”

The minister said the Indian leaders, ins­tead of blaming Pakistan without proof, must answer for state-sponsored espionage and terrorism against Pakistan. He said that Kulbhushan Jadhav was a living proof of Indian sponsorship of terrorism in Pakistan.

“India is destabilising regional peace in word and deed, through irresponsible statements on nuclear deterrent and through its bloody, five-fold escalation in 2017 of attacks on unarmed civilians on the Line of Control and Working Boundary,” he added.

He asserted that Pakistan’s armed forces were alive to threats and prepared fully to defend the country’s territorial integrity.

Meanwhile, the Foreign Office in its reaction regretted Indian allegations that Sunjuwan attack originated from Pakistan.

“The now familiar Indian tendency of apportioning blame to Pakistan, without a shred of evidence, is regrettable. The Indian allegations are premature and inopportune, especially as India itself admits that the operation still continues and investigations have just started, when these comments were made,” the spokesman said.

The Indian minister had said: “Intelligence inputs indicate that these terrorists were being controlled by their handlers from across the border.”

Published in Dawn, February 14th, 2018