NEW DELHI / ISLAMABAD (AA) – India has admitted that this week it accidentally fired a missile into Pakistan due to a “technical malfunction” during routine maintenance.
This Wednesday, “routine maintenance … led to the accidental firing of a missile. The government of India has taken a serious view and ordered a high-level court of enquiry,” said a Defense Ministry statement.
The statement comes a day after Pakistan’s military said that a high-speed flying object fired from India fell in the country’s southern part and damaged property on the ground.
“Thankfully, no loss or injury to human life was caused,” army spokesman Maj. Gen. Babar Iftikhar told a news conference at army headquarter in Rawalpindi near the capital Islamabad on Thursday.
Pakistan’s national security adviser Moeed Yusuf said India’s explanation beggared belief and urged an international investigation. He added that Indian move raises serious questions over its ability to handle such sensitive technology and urged the world to treat the incident with the urgency, sensitivity, and alarm it deserves.
On Thursday, Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry also summoned the Indian charge d’affaires in the capital Islamabad and lodged a strong protest over the violation of their country’s airspace.
Nuclear rivals and neighbors Pakistan and India have been locked in a string of disputes since the division of the Indian subcontinent in 1947, the most prominent being over the disputed Himalayan valley of Jammu and Kashmir.
Pakistan and India have fought three full-scale wars – 1948, 1965 and 1971 – including two over Kashmir.
Already fraught relations between the neighbors further plummeted since New Delhi scrapped the special status of Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir in August 2019.