Newly Appointed Pak Army Chief Rakes Up Kashmir Issue



Rawalpindi: Pakistan's newly-appointed army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Friday raked up the Kashmir issue for the first time in his address to soldiers and asked them to respond with "full force" to any ceasefire violations by India along the LoC.

"Each violation of any kind must be responded to with full force in the most effective manner," he said during a visit to the 10 Corps Rawalpindi and troops at forward locations along the Line of Control (LoC).

Bajwa was briefed on the security situation along the LoC "in view of recent violations and escalation by Indian troops and Pakistan's own response," the army's media wing Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said in a statement.

He said India's "aggressive posture" aims solely to divert the world's attention away from "atrocities" being committed by Indian troops in Kashmir, Dawn quoted the statement as saying.

The Kashmir issue will have to be resolved in line with United Nations resolutions keeping in view the aspirations of the Kashmiri people in order to achieve lasting regional peace, Bajwa said in his first public comments on the Kashmir issue after taking over as the Chief of Army Staff this week.

He appreciated the "befitting response" given to "unprovoked Indian firing" across the LoC and asked troops to keep the highest level of vigil at all times.

Bajwa's statement came at a time when there are strains in the relations between Pakistan and India following India's surgical strikes on terror launchpads in the PoK, and the terror attack on an army base camp in Uri.

General Bajwa, 57, took over the command of the army on Tuesday at a ceremony in Rawalpindi from General Raheel Sharif who retired on November 29.



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