September 2016 – ISLAMABAD, Pakistan – Tensions have risen dramatically between the nuclear-armed neighbors. PAKISTAN’S Defense Minister has threatened to “destroy” India – after India said on Thursday it had carried out “surgical strikes” on suspected militants preparing to infiltrate from Pakistan-ruled Kashmir. The strikes, which were a response to shots fired across the de facto border through the disputed Himalayan territory, could lead to a military escalation between the two nuclear-armed neighbors – risking a ceasefire agreed in 2003.
Tensions have been heightened since an attack on an Indian military base in Kashmir earlier this month, which left 18 soldiers dead. Both countries claim Kashmir in full, but rule separate parts – and have fought three wars over Kashmir since gaining independence from Britain in 1947. Responding to India’s latest strikes, Defense Minister Khawaja Asif said: “We will destroy India if it dares to impose war on us. “Pakistan army is fully prepared to answer any misadventure of India. “We have not made atomic device to display in a showcase. “If a such a situation arises we will use it and eliminate India.”
Meanwhile, US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said: “Pakistan nuclear weapons are entangled in a history of tension, and while they are not a threat to the United States directly, we work with Pakistan to ensure stability.” China, a traditional Pakistani ally, has also called for dialogue between the two nations. –The Sun