India dismisses reports of UN vehicle being targeted across LoC

Claims made by the Pakistan Army and Foreign Office that a UN vehicle was targeted by Indian troops on the Line of Control (LoC) are false and factually incorrect, people familiar with developments said on Friday.

The Pakistani military’s media arm and Foreign Office had both claimed that a vehicle carrying two officers of the United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) was “specifically targeted” by Indian troops from across the LoC.

Pakistani military spokesman Major General Babar Iftikhar had tweeted photos of a UN vehicle with apparent damage to its windows and chassis, and contended the SUV was the target of “unprovoked fire” in Chirikot sector of the LoC.

One of the people cited above said on condition of anonymity: “The reports emerging from the Pakistani side regarding an attack on a UN vehicle are completely false and factually incorrect.”

The person added: “There was no firing from the Indian side in this sector on Friday. Since movements of UN vehicles are known in advance, the question does not arise of any such firing. The allegations are baseless.”

The Indian side doesn’t recognise UNMOGIP, which has offices in Srinagar and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

Pakistan’s Foreign Office spokesperson Zahid Chaudhri had described the purported firing on the UN vehicle as a “new low”. He said the incident occurred at 10.45 am when the UNMOGIP officers were on their way to Polas village in Chirikot sector to meet people affected by ceasefire violations on the LoC.

The UN vehicle was damaged but the officers were unhurt, Chaudhri said.

There have been intense exchanges of fire between Indian and Pakistani troops along the LoC in recent months. The Indian side has said it responds to unprovoked firing by Pakistani troops that is meant to provide cover to terrorists trying to sneak across the LoC.

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