Meanwhile, events in Kashmir have gotten so tense that India and Pakistan are all but in an open shooting war.
Tensions between nuclear-armed rivals India and Pakistan escalated sharply on Wednesday, following conflicting claims by both of having shot down each other’s fighter aircraft in aerial ‘dogfights’ in the disputed Kashmir region.
A day after Indian Air Force (IAF) fighters attacked an alleged terrorist camp deep inside Pakistan, Islamabad said it had captured one Indian pilot after his aircraft was shot down in the first air-to-air engagement between the two forces since their last major war in 1971.
Pakistan military spokesman Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor said the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) had shot down two Indian fighters after they strayed into Pakistani air space and captured one pilot.
He told reporters in Islamabad that one of the IAF aircraft crashed in Pakistan-administered Kashmir while the second was hit and “limped” back to its base on the Indian side of the disputed principality.
He also displayed the seized pilot’s identity documents, in addition to publicising video clips of the trussed-up and bloodied pilot on social media outlets, in which he identifies himself and reveals only his service serial number.
India has called on Islamabad to treat the officer humanely and in accordance with the Geneva Convention. In a demarche to a senior Pakistani diplomat from its embassy in Delhi, India’s foreign ministry has demanded the pilot’s swift return.
An Indian foreign ministry official provided a different account of the events that led to the pilot’s capture. Raveesh Kumar claimed that Pakistan had responded to Tuesday’s attack by the IAF on a terrorist camp deep inside its territory by launching a retaliatory strike early the following morning against Indian military installations in Kashmir.
There's every indication that this is only going to get worse, and may I remind everyone, India and Pakistan are both nuclear powers. Commercial flights to Pakistan have been suspended and Indian PM Modi has effective slipped the leash on India's military.
It's going to get bad most likely, and quickly.