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Pakistani helicopter flies within 300m of LoC in Poonch, goes back

An army officer who has served in the sector said such violations are not uncommon and sometimes take place due to human error.

india Updated: Feb 21, 2018 20:18 IST
Ravi Krishnan Khajuria
Ravi Krishnan Khajuria
Hindustan Times, Jammu
Pakistan helicopter,LoC,Poonch
The Pakistani military helicopter that flew within 300m of the Line of Control. (ANI Photo)

A Pakistani military helicopter flew dangerously close to the Line of Control (LoC) in Khari Karmara area of Poonch district, where Indian army had foiled an attack by Pakistan’s Border Action Team (BAT) on January 18 killing a heavily armed terrorist.

“In clear violation of international conventions, a Pakistani helicopter came within 300 meters of the LoC in Pakistan-occupied territory near Khari Karmara where Pakistan tried to carry out a BAT attack on January 18,” said an intelligence official.

He said Indian soldiers did not fire on the chopper. The Pakistani helicopter flew over Pallandri area in PoK before returning.

According to mutually agreed norms along the Line of Control, helicopters are barred from coming within one kilometre of the de facto border and fixed wing aircraft are not allowed to come within 10km of the LoC.

“The Indian troops on the ground were able to see Pakistani helicopter as it flew very close to the LoC on PoK side and it was apparently flying low near a Pakistani post,” said the officer.

The development happened around 9:45 am.

An Indian army officer said that there was no airspace violation by the chopper.

An army officer who has served in the sector said such violations are not uncommon and sometimes take place due to human error.

The latest incident comes in the backdrop of escalating hostilities between the two countries.

There have been several instances of ceasefire violation by Pakistani troops in Jammu and Kashmir this year. On February 19, three civilians were injured in the heavy firing when the Pakistan army violated an unprovoked ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir’s Uri Sector.

At least 860 incidents of ceasefire violations reportedly recorded on the LoC alone in 2017. In 2015 there had been 152 incidents, and in 2016 there were 228. January 2018 recorded the highest number of ceasefire violations in a month since 2003. At least 23 people have lost their lives in Jammu and Kashmir this year in incidents related to terror and cross-border firings.

First Published: Feb 21, 2018 17:56 IST