Press Trust of india

Pak Army rejects reports of additional deployment of troops along LoC

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Islamabad: The Pakistan Army on Thursday rejected as “false and irresponsible” media reports that it has moved around 20,000 additional soldiers along the LoC in PaK and Gilgit-Baltistan to match the Chinese deployments on the LAC.

The military’s media wing in a statement on Twitter “vehemently” denied the presence of Chinese troops in Pakistan and refuted reports that the Skardu Airbase in Pakistan-administered Kashmir (PaK) was being used by China.

News claiming additional deployment of the Pakistan Army troops along the LoC in GB and alleged use of Skardu Airbase by China is “false, irresponsible and far from truth,” Inter-Services Public Relations Director General Maj Gen Babar Iftikhar said.

“No such movement or induction of additional forces has taken place. We also vehemently deny the presence of Chinese troops in Pakistan,” he said.

Amid the military stand-off between India and China in eastern Ladakh, media reports claimed that Pakistan has deployed “almost 20,000 additional soldiers” along the LoC in PaK and Gilgit-Baltistan “to match Chinese deployments on the Line of Actual Control in the east.

The report said that the level of troops Pakistan has deployed is more than what it did after the Balakot air strikes.

The ties between India and Pakistan strained following the Balakot strike when the Indian Air Force jets bombed a Jaish-e-Mohammed training camp in Pakistan on February 26 last year to avenge the killing of 40 Central Reserve Police Force personnel in the Pulwama  attack on February 14. Pakistan retaliated on February 27 by attempting to target Indian military installations.

The ties further nose-dived after New Delhi abrogated Article 370 that granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir in August last. Pakistan downgraded diplomatic relations with India and expelled the Indian High Commissioner.

Last month, India asked Pakistan to reduce the strength of its High Commission in New Delhi by 50 per cent within the next seven days and announced a reciprocal reduction in Indian strength in Islamabad.

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