Indian forces kill a Pakistani soldier

Pakistani soldier dies in India firing

Thu, 22 Aug 2013 16:49:35 GMT

The Pakistani army says one of its soldiers has been killed by Indian forces along their de-facto border dividing the disputed Kashmir.

A Pakistani military official said on Thursday unprovoked shooting took place by Indian troops at midday near the town of Rawlakut across the so-called de facto border known as Line of Control in Kashmir.

But, the Indian army has denied the accusation and said its troops responded after receiving gunfire from the Pakistani side.

This is the second fatal exchange of fire between the two sides within two days.

Earlier on Wednesday, Pakistan accused Indian forces of killing an army officer and seriously wounding another in Shakma sector near the town of Skardu.

Tensions erupted earlier this month after five Indian soldiers were killed in an ambush. New Delhi has accused Pakistan’s army of being involved in an overnight ambush that killed five Indian soldiers on August 6.

The border clashes threaten to torpedo recent overtures by the two countries to resume bilateral peace talks, which have been frozen since January.

Meanwhile, Pakistan’s highest body on security issues led by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Thursday said the country will continue to seek peaceful settlement of all outstanding issues with neighboring India.

“Pakistan will also continue to seek dialogue and resolution of all outstanding issues with India peacefully,” the Pakistani government said in a statement, adding, “The ceasefire should be maintained in letter and spirit. All military and diplomatic channels should be used to prevent ceasefire violations.”

Kashmir, which is a mountainous region in the north of both India and Pakistan, has been the bone of contention between the two neighbors for more than six decades.

India and Pakistan have fought three wars since their independence from Britain in 1947 — two of them over Kashmir.

Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan by the UN-monitored Line of Control, but is claimed in full by both countries. It lies at the heart of more than 60 years of hostility between India and Pakistan.

Thousands of people have been killed in Kashmir over the past 20 years.

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