India, Pak troops trade fire just hours after flag meeting

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No unprovoked attack from across shall go unanswered: Sitharaman

Jammu/ New Delhi: Within hours of a flag meeting to maintain ceasefire on the international border (IB) in Jammu and Kashmir, India and Pakistan troopers exchanged mortar fire on Tuesday.

Police said around 1 a.m. the Pakistan Rangers fired two-to-three mortars in the Akhnoor sector of the IB.

“Border Security Force (BSF) troopers did not retaliate. No casualty or damage was caused in the Pakistani shelling,” a police officer said.

On Monday, a sector commanders level flag meeting was held in Suchetgarh between the BSF and Pakistan Rangers for two hours.

The meeting was held on Pakistan’s request and the two sides agreed to respect the ceasefire agreement in letter and spirit.

Meanwhile, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today said no unprovoked attack from across the border shall go unanswered and defence forces have been given room to hit back.

The minister was responding to questions on the  firing along the Indo-Pak border despite the two sides agreeing for a truce.

“We shall keep our borders safe, forces have been given room to respond to any unprovoked firing. We shall ensure that no unprovoked attack goes without response,” she said.

The defence minister also said it is not her ministry’s role to determine whether the ongoing Ramazan ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir has been successful or not.

“We have been given room to hit back when there is unprovoked attack. The Defence ministry’s role is not to assess whether ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir has been successful or not,” Sitharaman said.

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