Repeated Border Skirmishes Escalate Tensions in South Asia

Global Security Newswire Staff
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Global Security Newswire Staff
Aug. 12, 2013, 9:02 a.m.

On Monday, both In­dia and Pakistan ac­cused the oth­er side of vi­ol­at­ing a 2003 cease fire at the Line of Con­trol, the bor­der that di­vides Kash­mir in­to In­di­an- and Pakistani-con­trolled halves, Time re­por­ted.

A spokes­per­son for the In­di­an De­fense Min­istry told re­port­ers that In­di­an mil­it­ary posts had been tar­geted in the early morn­ing hours of Monday by Pakistani troops. The In­di­an gov­ern­ment as­serts that this is the fifth in­stance in which Pakistani mil­it­ary per­son­nel have vi­ol­ated the cease fire in the last three days, ac­cord­ing to Time.

Mean­while, Pakistan ac­cused In­dia of fir­ing ar­til­lery shells “un­pro­voked” onto the Pakistani side of the Line of Con­trol and of tar­get­ing two check posts, ac­cord­ing to the news magazine.

While no deaths were re­por­ted in In­dia dur­ing the night, Pakistan claimed the In­di­an shelling killed a ci­vil­ian and in­jured an­oth­er, ac­cord­ing to Time.

A meet­ing between Pakistani Prime Min­is­ter Nawaz Sharif and In­di­an Prime Min­is­ter Man­mo­han Singh was be­ing worked out, but the vi­ol­ence that has stemmed from the ori­gin­al “am­bush” on Aug. 6 has thrown those plans in doubt. The Pi­on­eer re­por­ted that Singh is be­ing called on to boy­cott the pro­posed meet­ing in New York by In­dia’s “stra­tegic com­munity,” part of an over­all ef­fort by con­ser­vat­ive pun­dits to end what they see as ap­pease­ment to­ward Pakistan.

Late last week, In­di­an De­fense Min­is­ter A.K. Ant­ony said that “it is now clear that spe­cial­ist troops of the Pakistani Army were in­volved” in the early-Au­gust am­bush.

Ajit Dov­al, the former dir­ect­or of In­dia’s In­tel­li­gence Bur­eau, told the Pi­on­eer that “the gov­ern­ment should not as­sume that the new Pak PM, Nawaz Sharif, is com­mit­ted to im­prov­ing ties with In­dia. Our con­su­late in Jalalabad has been sub­ject to a ter­ror­ist at­tack for the first time, rais­ing ser­i­ous ques­tions about the tim­ing.” 

The con­su­late was tar­geted by sui­cide bombers early this month, ac­cord­ing to the Hindu. While Afghan se­cur­ity forces pre­ven­ted sui­cide bombers from en­ter­ing the con­su­late, 12 people died out­side when ex­plos­ives were det­on­ated. 

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