The Indian Air Force carried out a pre-emptive strike on the biggest Jaish-e-Mohammad terror camp in Balakot, located in Pakistan’s Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

Indias Amazing Fighters Leaders hail IAF strikes on JeM terror camp in BalakotRepresentative image (Courtesy: Flickr/Jorge Portalés)
news Airstrikes Tuesday, February 26, 2019 - 14:40

Leaders across political parties have hailed the Indian Air Force after it carried out airstrikes on terror camps across the Line of Control on Tuesday morning. Congress President Rahul Gandhi, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy were among the first politicians who congratulated the IAF after news of the airstrikes began to trickle in.

"I salute the pilots of the IAF," Gandhi tweeted. Kejriwal too took to Twitter to state: "I salute the bravery of Indian Air Force pilots who have made us proud by striking terror targets in Pakistan."

The official Twitter handle of the Aam Aadmi Party used a video clip from the Bollywood movie Border to congratulate the Air Force.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee wrote: "IAF also means India's Amazing Fighters. Jai Hind.

Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy and former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah congratulated the Indian Air Force. 

The Indian Air Force early on Tuesday morning carried out a pre-emptive strike on the biggest Jaish-e-Mohammad terror camp in Balakot, which is located in Pakistan’s Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa area. At around 3.30 am, a group of Mirage 2000 fighter jets carried out airstrikes on terrorist camps located across the LoC and that around 1,000 kgs of bombs had been dropped.

In this operation, a large number of JeM terrorists, trainers, senior commanders and groups of jihadis who have been trained for fidayeen action were eliminated, Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale told the media. This facility was headed by Maulana Yusuf Azhar alias Ustad Ghauri, who is the brother-in-law of JeM Chief Masood Azhar.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K. Palaniswami on Tuesday praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his daring actions to eradicate terrorism. He also thanked Modi on behalf of the people of Tamil Nadu for the daring action by the Indian Air Force (IAF) in destroying the terror camps operating inside Pakistan through air strikes early on Tuesday.

DMK Working President MK Stalin and actors-turned-politicians Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan too congratulated the Indian Air Force for their valour.

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu hailed the Indian Air Force for the strikes.

AIMIM Chief Asaduddin Owaisi told news agency ANI that he welcomed the IAF strikes and hoped that the government now goes after JeM Chief Masood Azhar and Lashkar-e-Taiba chief Hafiz Saeed.

“I was expecting this sort of response within two-three days after the Pulwama blast. We stand with the government. Though Foreign Secretary called it non-military action, it is a step I was expecting that the government will take a long time ago. I hope the government will now go after Masood Azhar and Hafiz Saeed,” Owaisi said.

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 had 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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