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Pakistan says India used cluster munition against civilians, India denies

4th Aug 2019
Pakistan says India used cluster munition against civilians, India denies

By Islamuddin Sajid

 

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AA): The Pakistani army on Saturday claimed that India’s armed forces used banned cluster munitions to target civilians near the de facto border dividing the disputed Kashmir valley, claims immediately denied by India. Meanwhile, the India has sent 10,000 extra troops to Kashmir – where it already has 500,000 forces – a week ago. Indian media reported an additional 25,000 troops are to be sent.

Inter-Service Public Relation (ISPR), the Pakistani army’s media wing, said in a statement that the Indian army had used cluster munitions to “deliberately target” civilians — including women and children — in the Neelum Valley near Kashmir’s line of control (LoC), in violation of the Geneva Conventions and international humanitarian law.

It added that Indian soldiers targeted civilians in the region via artillery using cluster munitions on Tuesday night, killing two civilians, including a 4-year-old boy, and critically injuring 11.

Due to their severe impact on non-combatants, the use of cluster munitions is prohibited under the 2008 international Convention on Cluster Munitions.

But India’s army dismissed the claims of cluster munitions use as “lie, deceit, and deception.”

“Pakistan army regularly attempts to push terrorists through infiltrations and opens up with multitude of weapons to assist them,” it said in a statement.

“India, during numerous Directorate of Military Operations-level talks, has maintained the right to respond. Such responses are only against military targets and infiltrating terrorists who are aided by Pak Army.”

The two South Asian nuclear neighbors have repeatedly accused each other of violating the ceasefire along Kashmir’s line of control in recent years, having fought three wars in 1948, 1965 and 1971 — two of them over Kashmir — since they were partitioned in 1947.

[Photo: [Image depicts graphic content] Wounded children are seen after Indian forces attacked near Line of Control in Pakistan on August 03, 2019. Pakistan Army claims that Indian forces used cluster ammunition. Photographer:  Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan / Handout/AA]

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