Indian air strike on Balakot killed dozens of terrorists, including former ISI agents: Reports

New Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 02 March 2019, 01:05 PM
 The dead, they said, included 12 men who were said to have been sleeping in a single temporary shack, and several individuals who had earlier served in Pakistan's military. (Photos: ANI)
The dead, they said, included 12 men who were said to have been sleeping in a single temporary shack, and several individuals who had earlier served in Pakistan's military. (Photos: ANI)

The Indian Air Force (IAF) struck the Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) camp in PoK on February 26 and killed the brother and the brother-in-law of JeM chief Masood Azhar, among others in a pre-dawn aerial attack. According to a report in the Firstpost, eyewitnesses present at the site said they saw up to 35 bodies being transported out of the site by ambulance in the hours after the attack. The dead, they said, included 12 men who were said to have been sleeping in a single temporary shack, and several individuals who had earlier served in Pakistan's military.

"Local authorities reached the site soon after the bombing," one witness said, "but the area had already been cordoned off by then by the army, who did not even allow police to enter. The army also took away mobile phones from the medical staff on the ambulances,” the report read citing a source who wished to remain anonymous. 

However, there are conflicting eyewitness testimonies, too. While some say there were no Jaish-e-Muhammad fighters at Jaba top, and others insisting they were present. There were reports that also said that no Jaish trainees were attacked and it was only civilians who were the actual victims.

Independent satellite imagery analysis conducted by Nathan Ruser of the prestigious Australian Strategic Policy Institute concluded that there is "no apparent evidence of more extensive damage and on the face of it does not validate Indian claims regarding the effect of the strikes," it was reported.

A former Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) officer known locally as "Colonel Salim" was killed in the bombing, sources said, while a "Colonel Zarar Zakri" was injured. Mufti Moeen, a Jaish-e-Muhammad instructor from Peshawar, and improvised explosive device-fabrication expert Usman Ghani were also killed in the bombing. Indian intelligence sources said two of the names mentioned by the eyewitnesses — Usman and Colonel Salim — had also figured in communications intelligence available.

First Published: Saturday, March 02, 2019 12:36 PM
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