India Says Two Soldiers Killed by Pakistan Forces in KashmirMark Williams and Haris Anwar
Two Indian soldiers were killed by Pakistani forces in an attack on an army patrol near the Line of Control that divides the Himalayan territory of Kashmir between the two countries, according to Press Trust of India.
Pakistan’s army denied its troops had carried out unprovoked firing in a text message sent by its media unit.
The clash took place in the Poonch district, the news agency reported, citing Indian army officials that it didn’t name. Pakistani soldiers crossed the cease-fire line to attack the patrol before retreating back into territory controlled by Pakistan, the Associated Press reported, quoting Brigadier S. Chawla, an Indian army spokesman.
Two calls to the Indian army’s media office in New Delhi out of office hours weren’t answered.
The encounter was the second in three days in Kashmir. Pakistan’s military said one of its soldiers was killed as the country’s forces repulsed an Indian attack near another area of the de facto border on Jan. 6. India said its troops opened fire to retaliate for Pakistani shelling. In a statement, the External Affairs Ministry denied that Indian soldiers had crossed the border.
Pakistan summoned India’s deputy high commissioner to the foreign office in Islamabad after the incident and protested what it called an unprovoked attack, according to a ministry statement e-mailed to reporters.
While Indian and Pakistan troops occasionally exchange fire in the disputed Kashmir region, a truce in place for almost a decade has reduced violence. The two nations have fought three wars since their independence from the British rule in 1947, two of them over their claims to Kashmir.
The nuclear-armed neighbors are seeking to rebuild ties shattered by the attacks on Mumbai in 2008 by Pakistani militants, in which 166 people died. Peace talks resumed in 2011, focusing on efforts to spur regional trade.