Pakistan Summons Indian Official to Protest at Cross-Border Shelling

Pakistan on Monday summoned an Indian official to protest over cross-border shelling from its neighbour that it said had killed a child and wounded four civilians.

India and Pakistan have accused each other of mortar and artillery shelling along the de facto border known as the Line of Control (LoC) that divides the disputed Kashmir region. The sporadic exchanges began on Saturday.

The two South Asian nuclear powers both claim the Kashmir region in full, but rule only parts, and often accuse each other of breaching a 2003 ceasefire pact by shelling and firing across the LoC.

The Pakistani foreign ministry said in a statement that Islamabad had summoned an Indian ministry official to lodge a protest over ceasefire violations by Delhi.

Kashmir remains divided between the two countries since they won independence from British rule in 1947. The neighbours have fought two of their three wars over Kashmir.

India said at the weekend that Pakistani shelling had killed three civilians, while the Pakistani foreign ministry said Indian firing had killed the child and wounded four others.

“This year, India has so far committed 749 ceasefire violations to date,” the ministry said, and it condemned the targeting of innocent civilians.

Tension between the two countries was renewed when New Delhi withdrew the autonomy of its part of the Kashmir region in 2019 and split it into territories federally administered by India. Until then, it had had autonomy over all matters except defence, communications and foreign affairs.

India accuses Pakistan of training and sending militants across the border to launch attacks and support a Kashmiri separatist movement against Indian rule.

Pakistan denies giving material support to militants in Kashmir but says it provides moral and diplomatic backing for the self-determination of Kashmiri people.