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October 15, 2014

NATO gunship helicopters violate Pakistani airspace

Afghanistan: A NATO Black Hawk helicopter taking off.

PESHAWAR (Dawn): NATO gunship helicopters violated Pakistani airspace and entered Pakistani territory where they stayed for 10 minutes before returning, official sources told Dawn.

At least five helicopters were seen flying near the Pak-Afghan border and two of them entered Pakistani territory in Torkham and Pasidkhel.

The helicopters remained in Pakistani airspace for 10 minutes and returned without any action.

Sources said the helicopters crossed over through Shamshad mountains situated between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

A few days back, Nato had carried out a massive assault on Taliban positions in the Shamshad mountains and had killed scores of Afghan Taliban members.

Pakistan is yet to respond to the violation and it hasn’t yet been ascertained whether the incursion was deliberate or a slipping over of the helicopters into Pakistani airspace during routine patrolling on account of the rugged mountainous terrain.

October 14, 2014

Pakistan, India military talk on hotline amid Kashmir tensions

Pakistani and Indian paramilitary soldiers stand guard at Wagah border.

ISLAMABAD (Express Tribune): Senior Pakistani and Indian military officials spoke Tuesday by hotline after days of intense cross-border firing in the disputed region of Kashmir heightened tensions.

Pakistan’s military said Tuesday it had voiced concern at continued Indian firing across the disputed frontier.

“A routine weekly hotline contact was established today between directors of military operations of Pakistan and  Indian armies,” a senior military official said in Islamabad on condition of anonymity.

“Pakistan army’s director of military operations conveyed concern to Indian counterpart and pointed towards India’s consistent unprovoked firing on civil population living along the Line of Control and the working boundary.”

More than 12 people have been killed and 54 others injured in Indian firing along the LoC and Working Boundary over the past two weeks. Unprovoked Indian firing has triggered an exodus of people from the villages near the LoC and Working Boundary.

Clashes occur regularly along the Line of Control, as well as along the working boundary.
The latest shelling began over a week ago, and while its intensity has lessened since Friday Pakistani officials say firing has continued.

Pakistan said Friday that both countries shared a duty to defuse the situation, while India’s foreign ministry maintained that “de-escalation is now entirely in Pakistan’s hands”.

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