US supports IAF strike on Jaish camp in Pak, Mike Pompeo tells Ajit Doval: Report
National Security Advisor Ajit Doval spoke to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo over the phone on Wednesday night amid tensions between India and Pakistan, news agency ANI reported.
Mike Pompeo told Ajit Doval that the US supported India’s decision to take target terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed’s biggest training camp at Balakot in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. Indian Air Force jets flew across the Line of Control on Tuesday morning to blow up the terror camp.
This comes on a day when Pakistan violated Indian airspace and attempted to target military establishments on Indian side of the Line of Control. Indian Air Force foiled the Pakistan Air Force’s attempt and shot down one F-16 jet of Pakistan. The IAF also lost one fighter plane.
One Indian pilot, who landed on the other side of the LoC after his plane crashed, was taken in custody by Pakistan Army. India issued a strongly worded demarche to Pakistan seeking immediate safe return of the IAF pilot.
Pompeo had spoken over phone on Tuesday with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi urging the two countries to de-escalate tensions.
In a statement, Pompeo later said, “Following Indian counter-terrorism actions on February 26, I spoke with Indian Minister of External Affairs Swaraj to emphasise our close security partnership and shared goal of maintaining peace and security in the region.”
“I also spoke to Pakistani Foreign Minister Qureshi to underscore the priority of de-escalating current tensions by avoiding military action, and the urgency of Pakistan taking meaningful action against terrorist groups operating on its soil,” Pompeo said.
Earlier, US National Security Adviser John Bolton had in a telephonic conversation with Doval last week said that America supports India’s right to self-defence in the wake of Pulwama terror attack, for which Jaish-e-Mohammed claimed responsibility. At least 40 CRPF soldiers were killed in the terror attack on February 14 in Jammu and Kashmir.