IAF air strike: JeM was attempting more suicide attacks; preemptive strike was necessary, says Foreign secretary

India acted on credible intelligence information and destroyed the biggest Jaish camp in the wee hours of Tuesday at Balakot, says Vijay Gokhale

In a pre-dawn strike, IAF's Mirage 2000 fighter jets bombed terror camps in Balakot, Muzaffarabad and Chakoti, across the Line of Control in the Pakistani side, 12 days after Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed terror group carried out the deadly Pulwama attack in Kashmir.

The attack comes in wake of suicide bombing attack on a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) convoy in Pulwama on February 14 that killed 40 troopers. 

The attack was claimed by Pakistan-based militant group, Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), and prompted a spike in tensions between the two nuclear-armed neighbours.

Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale called for a press meet to brief about the strike: 

  • In an intelligence lead operation in the early hours today, India struck the biggest training camp of Jaish-e-Mohammed in Balakot. In this operation, a very large number of JeM terrorists, trainers, senior commander & Jihadis were eliminated.
  • Credible information was received that JeM was attempting other attacks in the country. A preemptive strike became important. India struck the biggest camp of JeM in Balakot.
  • Not taking any questions, for now, will be releasing a detailed statement shortly.
  • This non-military preemptive action was targeted specifically at JeM camp. The selection of the target was also conditioned by our desire to avoid civilian casualties, says Gokhale.
  • Large number of JeM terrorists, trainers, senior commanders, group of jehadis eliminated in operation.
  • Foreign secretary says India firmly committed towards taking all measures to fight terrorism.
  • India expects Pakistan to dismantle all terror camps, including those of JeM