Indian troops open fire at UN military observers vehicle near LoC

PKonweb Report — Two officials belonging to the UN Military Observers group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) narrowly escaped a firing incident as Indian troops reportedly targeted their vehicle while they were visiting the areas along the Line of Control (LoC) in disputed Kashmir, DawnNews reported on Wednesday.

Pakistan’s military media wing Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said the “Indian troops committed unprovoked ceasefire violation.” The Indian troops deployed on LoC, “targeted UNMOGIP vehicle along LOC in Khanjar sector,” it said.

According to details shared by the military’s media wing, the vehicle was carrying UNMOGIP Officers Major Emmanual of Philippine and Major Mirko of Croatia when it came under fire.

ISPR further said that the officials, who were on a visit to the LOC, were targeted despite UNMOGIP blue flag being hoisted on the vehicle as per peacekeeping procedure.

Both officers remained safe and were rushed back to a safe location, it added.

The UNMOGIP office was set up in Indian-held Kashmir’s city of Srinagar in 1949 to monitor the ceasefire line, now known as line-of-control (LoC), a de facto border that divides Kashmir into India and Pakistan controlled parts. New Delhi has been suggesting UN to wind up its mission in Kashmir, according to reports.

Last week, Pakistan Army had lodged a protest before military observers from United Nations against ‘unprovoked’ Indian aggression and firing on civilians from across the LoC.

United Nations Military Observers at UNMOGIP were invited to GHQ to register a protest over “unprovoked ceasefire violations and targeting of civilian population by Indian Army”.

The observers were informed that the Indian army violated ceasefire agreement on May 10, 13 and 16, said an earlier statement issued by ISPR, reported Dawn.

“Indian Army used small arms, automatic and heavy caliber weapons, heavy mortars (122 mm) and field artillery in Sabzkot, Baroh, Tandar, Khuiratta, Kot Koterra and Karela Sectors to target Pakistani villages.”

The observers were also told that a civilian was killed and 15 others, including women and children, injured when Indian troops resorted to firing.

Incidents of cross-border firing have become a norm since the last quarter of 2016 as tensions simmer between Pakistan and India over the Kashmir issue. Exchanges of fire have been reported sporadically since the new year began.

Pakistan maintains that India has been attempting to divert the world’s attention]away from human rights violations committed by government forces in India-held Kashmir.

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