At least seven Pakistani soldiers were killed on Sunday night during cross-border firing across the Line of Control (LoC), confirmed an Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) statement on Monday.
“Seven soldiers embraced Shahadat (martyrdom) at the LoC in the Bhimber sector in cross-fire LoC violation by Indian troops late last night.”
Pakistani troops responded to ‘unprovoked’ Indian firing, and targeted Indian posts effectively, the ISPR added in its statement on social media.
Tension between Pakistan and India has been high since July, when Indian forces killed a young Kashmiri fighter in Indian-held Kashmir, prompting months of protests and a security crackdown that has claimed several lives.
Both countries claim Kashmir but administer separate parts, divided by a de facto border. Since independence from the British in 1947, they have fought two of their three wars over the territory.
Tension ratcheted further in September, when 18 Indian soldiers were killed at an army base in Indian-held Kashmir, in an attack Delhi blamed on Pakistan-based militants. However, Pakistan denied that it was involved in that attack.
Several days later, India claimed it had carried out ‘surgical strikes’ on militant bases across the border, a claim Pakistan dismissed as ‘an illusion’.