After initial frenzy, key facts about the ‘Surgical Strike 2.0’ are trickling down the information framework. Now, latest pictures have surfaced online that show Jaish-e-Mohammed’s Balakot terror camps. The photos tweeted by news agency ANI show the nondescript camp located on a hilltop of the Balakot forests. According to intel sources, ammunition dump blown up today had more than 200 AK rifles, uncountable rounds hand grenades, explosives and detonators.
Entire terror set up in the suicide bombing training centre in Balakot was decimated in pre-dawn attack. Though Pakistan has resolutely denied the attack inside Balakot, intel; sources say over 300 terrorists were eliminated in the covert operation by the Indian Air Force. Flags of the USA, UK and Israel were painted on staircases at the Jaish e Mohammed facility.
Key Jaish-e-Mohammed operatives targeted in today’s air strikes were Maulana Ammar, who was associated with Afghanistan and Kashmir operations. Others included Maulana Talha Saif, brother of Maulana Masood Azhar and head of preparation wing.
The Balakot-based Jaish-e-Mohammad terror camp destroyed by the Indian Air Force Tuesday was located on the bank of the Kunhar river in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan and was also used by the Hizbul Mujahideen terror group, government sources said.
The Balakot camp was an important training centre for the JeM and other terror organisations and it had several structures to accommodate terrorist trainees and facilities to train them. Situated on the Kunhar river, the Balakot camp offered possibility of aquatic training to terrorists and housed hundreds of terrorists, the sources said.
The camp, 20 km from the Balakot town, was used for "battle inoculation" and its trainers were ex-officers of the Pakistan Army. Several "inspirational lectures" were delivered by JeM founder and terror mastermind Masood Azhar and other terrorist leaders on several occasions.
In the Balakot camp, the terrorists were imparted the advanced 'Daura-e-Khaas' training in weapons, explosives and field tactics, attack on convoys of security forces, planting and making of IEDs, suicide bombing, rigging vehicles for suicide attacks and survival tactics in high altitudes and extreme-stress situations, they said.
The report also said that nod for February 26 airstrike was given by the Indian Air Force chief on February 15. Reportedly a dry run was conducted on February 24. There were also reports that Pakistan had scrambled F-16s to intercept the Indian Air Force but abandoned seeing the Indian formation. The February 26 airstrike was coordinated by the IAF’s Western Air Command.
(With agency inputs)