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Indian Army chief issues stern warning to Pakistan


10:53, January 15, 2013

NEW DELHI, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) -- Indian Army chief General Bikram Singh Monday issued a stern warning to Pakistan, saying the military would retaliate aggressively in case of any further provocation from troops across the border.

General Singh said that India had the right to retaliate at the "time and place of its choice" for the clash on January 6 in which two Indian soldiers were killed. One of the soldiers was even beheaded.

"Our response has been restrained and measured in retaliation to Pakistani provocation. We will retaliate at the time and place of our choosing," the Army chief told the media in the national capital.

He added, "We expect our commanders to be aggressive. The orders are very clear -- when provoked, I expect my unit commanders should fire back. It was a clever and pre-planned attack by Pakistan."

The Army chief's warning came as commanders of both the Indian Army and Pakistani Army held talks at the international border, known as the Line of Control (LoC), aimed at reducing tensions.

Tensions have been mounting along the LoC in the past few weeks.

Both India and Pakistan have denied provoking the clashes at the LoC on last week, in which two Indian soldiers died.

Two Pakistani soldiers were also killed in the clashes in the disputed territory of Kashmir over which India and Pakistan have fought at least three major wars in the last 65 years. ]

Pakistan defence officials Monday lodged protest with Indian military over the 'continuous ceasefire violation including an attempted raid by Indian troops' along the Line of Control (LoC), the de facto border between the two countries in the disputed Kashmir region, the military said.

Pakistan and India accused each other of violation of the 2003 ceasefire following exchange of firing over the past week, which claimed lives of four soldiers on both sides.

In order to reduce tension military officials of the two sides met along the LoC, the second contact between them since the first clash last week.

The Pakistan army said that the Brigadier Level Flag Meeting was held at Chakan da Bagh in Poonch Sector on LoC.

"Pakistan strongly protested with Indian Military Authorities about continuous cease fire violations including an attempted raid by Indian troops on LoC during last one week," a Pakistan's army statement said.

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