Pakistan considering complete airspace closure for India: minister


By Muhammad Luqman

Prime Minister Imran Khan is considering a “complete closure” of airspace to India, Pakistan’s Federal Minister Fawad Chaudhry said on Tuesday.

“A complete ban on the use of Pakistan’s land routes for Indian trade to Afghanistan was suggested in the cabinet meeting,” the minister for science and technology said in a tweet.

Pakistan had closed its airspace for India after Indian fighter jets violated the airspace on February 26.

On February 27, Pakistani jets had downed two Indian planes over Kashmir and arrested Indian wing commander Abhinandan Varthaman. The wing commander was released after a few days as a gesture of peace.

Pakistan had opened its airspace for Indian flights in July. Indian airlines suffered a loss of millions of dollars due to the temporary closure.

The latest tensions between the two countries started August 5 after India scrapped  the autonomous status of Indian-held Kashmir.

In his address to the nation on Monday, Prime Minister Imran Khan had termed the BJP government’s move to revoke Kashmir’s special status as a “historical blunder.”

The premier had said that Pakistan had received information that India was planning to stage a “false flag operation” in Kashmir to justify a possible attack on Pakistan.

“Our army had prepared itself after we received the information,” PM Khan said.

He urged the world to intervene to ease tensions between the two countries, saying that India and Pakistan both have nuclear weapons.

“No country will win this [war],” he added.


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