Loc Flare-Up: Pak Accuses India Of Targeting School Bus

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Mendhar: After a brief lull, Indian and Pakistani troopers exchanged fire along the Line of Control on Friday morning.

Reports said that the armies of India and Pakistan on Friday morning exchanged fire along the Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir.

SDPO Mendhar Shahid Nayeem confirmed that fire was exchanged in Dabi forward area in Balakote sector. He said that the firing began at 7am and ended after half an hour.

Pakistan has accused Indian forces of opening fire on a school van in the disputed Kashmir region, killing the driver and wounding at least eight children, AFP and dawn.com reported on Friday.

The incident occurred on December 16 at Mohra village in the Nakyal sector of Pakistani-administered Kashmir where Pakistani officials said shelling by Indian troops was continuing.

The driver of the van, carrying 20 students of a private school, died on the spot as the vehicle came under fire, the officials said.The injured children — aged between 10 and 15 — were taken to hospital amid heavy shelling.

‘Pakistani troops effectively responded and targeted Indian posts from where fire was coming,’ the Inter-Services Public Relations said in a statement.

There were no immediate comments from Indian authorities.

Nakyal lies on the Line of Control, the de facto border between India and Pakistan in the disputed Himalayan state.

Kashmir has been divided between India and Pakistan since the end of British rule in 1947. Both claim Kashmir in its entirety and have fought two wars over it.

“Pakistani troops effectively responded and targeted Indian posts from where fire was coming,” the ISPR added. The injured children are between the age of eight and 15 years, said Assistant Commissioner Zeeshan Khan.

Seven injured children have been transferred to District Headquarters Hospital Kotli while efforts are being made to transfer others as well. Three amongst the injured are reported to be in critical condition and will be transferred to Islamabad for treatment.

The latest cross-border firing has come after a calm of over two weeks at the LoC.

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