According to reports, around 12 Mirage 2000 fighter jets dropped 1,000 kg of bombs on terror camps across the Line of Control.

IAF carries out airstrikes on JeM terror camps across LoC Reports Image for representation only (By Flickr/Smudge9000)
news Airstrikes Tuesday, February 26, 2019 - 10:02

The Indian Air Force carried out air strikes on terrorist camps across the Line of Control (LoC) early Tuesday morning, several reports stated quoting IAF sources. The targets, reports state, were Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorist camps in Balakot, Chakothi and Muzaffarabad. While Balakot is located in Pakistan’s  Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, Chakothi and Muzaffarabad are located in Pakistan-Occupied-Kashmir.

“At 0330 hours on 26th February, a group of Mirage 2000 Indian Fighter jets struck a major terrorist camp across the LoC and completely destroyed it. 1000 Kg bombs were dropped on terror camps across the LoC,” IAF sources told news agency ANI. 

ANI reports that the terror launch pads across the LOC were completely destroyed in IAF air strikes and that the JeM control rooms also destroyed. According to IANS, flight tracking websites spotted heightened activities along the border with an IAF early warning plane Emb 145 and mid-air refueller circling in the area early in the morning. 

ANI further reports that Pakistani F16s were scrambled to retaliate against IAF Mirage 2000s but turned back due to the size of Indian formation. The Western Air Command of the Indian Air Force has coordinated operation, ANI added.

Spokesperson Pakistan Armed Forces Major General Asif Ghafoor also confirmed on Twitter that IAF aircraft had crossed the LoC. “Indian Air Force violated Line of Control. Pakistan Air Force immediately scrambled. Indian aircrafts gone back,” he stated in a tweet.

The strike in Balakot is significant as the location is beyond Pakistan Administered Kashmir, indicating it was not merely an LoC intrusion but a punitive action inside Pakistani territory. Sources have told NDTV that the air strikes were “100 per cent successful.”

According to reports, NSA Ajit Doval has met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and has informed him of the situation on the ground. Minister of State for Agriculture Gajendra Singh Shekhawat was the first voice from the government to state that India has carried out the aerial strike. 

Indian Air Force has put on high alert all air defence systems along the international border and LoC to respond to any possible action by Pakistan Air Force, reports ANI.

The air strikes come 12 days after 49 CRPF personnel were killed in a suicide terror attack in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama. The attack, which triggered global outrage and condemnation, was claimed by the Pakistan-based militant group JeM and prompted a spike in tensions between the two nuclear-armed neighbours.

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