Pakistan’s military said on Wednesday that it had shot down two Indian aircraft that had entered Pakistani airspace and captured one of the pilots, in an escalation of hostilities just a day after Indian fighter jets crossed the disputed Kashmir region to launch an airstrike within Pakistan.
The claim by Pakistan’s military was not confirmed by the Indian government. Earlier, Indian officials said that one of the country’s fighter jets had crashed within Indian-controlled Kashmir, with the cause being unclear.
There are fears that tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbors could escalate after Prime Minister Imran Khan of Pakistan promised on Tuesday to retaliate for an incursion by Indian jets hours before. Those airstrikes were the first time since 1971 that the Indian Air Force had crossed the Line of Control, the de facto border between the Indian- and Pakistani-held areas of Kashmir, to strike inside Pakistan.
Pakistan’s chief military spokesman, Maj. Gen. Asif Ghafoor, said the country’s air force had shot down two Indian aircraft inside Pakistani airspace on Wednesday morning after they crossed the Line of Control.One of the aircraft fell inside AJ&K while other fell inside IOK. One Indian pilot arrested by troops on ground while two in the area,” General Ghafoor said on Twitter, using the acronyms for the Pakistani- and Indian-administered portions of the state of Jammu and Kashmir.
“In response to PAF strikes this morning as released by MoFA, IAF crossed LOC. PAF shot down two Indian aircrafts inside Pakistani airspace. One of the aircraft fell inside AJ&K while other fell inside IOK. One Indian pilot arrested by troops on ground while two in the area”.