RAWALPINDI: “Akhnoor, the last strategic gateway to the city of Jammu, the winter Capital of Kashmir State, has been liberated by our forces after the toughest battle in the whole campaign,” says a communique issued from Trar­khel, headquarters of the Azad Kashmir Govern­ment. The communique adds: “Indian and Dogra troops made a desperate stand at Akhnoor and suffered heavy casualties and lost large quantities of equipment. The fleeing enemies have set a large part of the town on fire and they were prevented from causing further damage by the speedy advance of the Azad Kashmir Forces.

“Our advance guard has crossed the river Chenab, to the West of Akhnoor and are closely pursuing the enemy who is fleeing towards Jam­mu. The remaining last Dogra stronghold of Now­­shera in the western Jammu Province has been completely surrounded by our troops and the encircled garrison is faced with the alternative of surrender or total annihilation. Our patrol activity has been intensified on all other sectors.”

[According to] the enemy version, Indian army troops patrolled vigorously in the Mirpur and Hangur-Kotli areas during the last 24 hours, says a Defence Ministry communique, issued in New Delhi on Kashmir tonight [Dec 5].

Published in Dawn, December 6th, 2022

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