Violence flares in Kashmir as Pakistan and India exchange cross-border mortar fire

An Indian Defence Ministry spokesman said Pakistani forces had attacked targets along the so-called Line of Control in Rajouri district with mortar and small arms fire. Indian troops returned fire and there has been sporadic cross-border fighting throughout the day.

And Indian Defence Ministry spokesman said: “Pakistan initiated unprovoked ceasefire violation by shelling with mortars and firing of small arms along the Line of Control in Nowshera sector of Rajouri. The Indian Army is retaliating befittingly.”

He said there were no report of casualties in the cross-border shelling but said the latest hostilities – the third day of clashes between the two nuclear-capable nations – were ongoing.

A civilian was injured yesterday when the Pakistan Army aimed mortar shells at villages in the Mankote sector of Poonch district.

Indian Defence Ministry spokesman Lt Col Devender Anand said in a statement: “Around 7.30am, Pakistan initiated the attack violating the ceasefire agreement.

“There was unprovoked attack launched by the Pakistani soldiers in Mankote and Krishna Ghati sectors.”

“The Indian Army retaliated effectively.”

A total of seven people, including three soldiers, have been killed in the district of Poonch since India carried out an air strike on a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror camp in Pakistan’s Balakot area on February 26.

Last Sunday, India was on high alert as it reportedly spotted a Pakistani drone along the Line of Control, amid heightened tensions between the warring nations over the Kashmir region.