Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday said that they will release the Indian Air Force pilot in their custody on Friday as a peace gesture. He was addressing the joint session of the parliament in Islamabad.
A MiG 21 pilot IAF pilot was taken into custody by Pakistan when his plane went down in the Pakistan territory in air-to-air combat.
“Efforts for de-escalation should not be considered a weakness,” Khan said in his address. India on Thursday said that talk with Pakistan cannot take place till Pakistan walks the talk on terror and takes immediate, credible and verifiable action against terrorism.
New Delhi had issued a demarche to the Pakistan envoy demanding the immediate and safe return of the IAF pilot. The dossier on the Pulwama attack was also handed over to Pakistan. On Feb 14 a suicide car bomb had attacked a 78 vehicle CRPF convoy in Pulwama, J&K taking the lives of 40 personnel. Jaish-e-Mohammad had taken the responsibility of the attack. Pakistan denied that they had anything to do with the attack.
India had also ramped up international pressure to blacklist JeM chief Masood Azhar in the UNSC.
“India gave us a dossier today, two days after they attacked us,” Pak PM told his parliament.
On Feb 26 in predawn ‘intelligence-led, non-military, pre-emptive’ strike India destroyed a Jaish-e-Mohammad training camp on a hill-top in thick forest in Balakot, Pakistan, where many commanders and trainers were eliminated according to the ministry of external affairs, which did not give any further details. Multiple media reports quoting sources said that as a counter-terrorism action India sent 12 Mirage 2000 into Pakistan and some of them struck the terror camp killing more than 300 terrorists.
In response, on Feb 27 Pakistan Air Force violated Indian airspace. India shot down one Pakistan fighter plane and lost one MiG. One Indian pilot was taken by Pakistan. India had then demanded safe and immediate return of the pilot.
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