How world media reported on Indian Air Force-Pakistan Air Force skirmish

Both India and Pakistan shot each other's warplanes following an unsuccessful attempt by Pakistan Air Force to target Indian military installations in retaliatory strikes.

How world media reported on Indian Air Force-Pakistan Air Force skirmish Image Courtesy: Pixabay

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday met the chiefs of the Army, the Navy and the Air Force at his official residence to hold discussions over the security situation after Pakistani aircraft violated Indian airspace and an Indian pilot was taken into custody by Pakistan. This was the second such meeting of PM Modi with the three chiefs in 24 hours. 

In fast-paced development on Wednesday, both India and Pakistan shot each other's warplanes following an unsuccessful attempt by Pakistan Air Force to target Indian military installations in retaliatory strikes. India shot down an F-16 warplane of Pakistan while it lost a MiG 21 during the fierce engagement between the air forces of the two countries along the Line of Control(LoC). Later, Pakistan released the video of captured IAF personnel prompting strong response from New Delhi. The government  slammed Pakistan for the vulgar display of the injured IAF personnel and demanded that he be handed back safely.

As tension mounted, the entire airspace north of New Delhi was briefly "vacated". Nine airports in Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Punjab were closed for civilian traffic for some part of the morning but opened later in the day. Jammu and Kashmir was the centre of much of the action on a day of escalating tensions between the two neighbours.

The developments came a day after India bombed Jaish-e-Mohammed's(JeM) biggest training camp in Pakistan, 11 days after Pulwama attack that claimed the lives of 40 CRPF personnel.

Here's how world media reported the developments of Day 2 of tension between India and Pakistan:

BBC: BBC reported that Pakistan has claimed shooting down two Indian military jets and capturing an Indian pilot in a major escalation between the two nuclear powers. India said it had lost one MiG-21 fighter and demanded the immediate and safe return of its pilot. Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan said the two sides could not afford a miscalculation and called for de-escalation of tension.

CNN: Reporting the developments of February 27, CNN said that Pakistan said that its air force shot down two Indian fighter jets, in a significant escalation of the crisis between the two nuclear-armed powers. India later confirmed the loss of one plane and said it shot down a Pakistani jet while responding to the violation of Indian airspace of Pakistani fighter jets. Pakistan claimed to have captured an Indian pilot and Islamabad released a video of captured pilot. India slammed Pakistani for releasing the video demanded the safe return of its pilot. The confrontation between the two countries came a day after Indian Air Force launched airstrikes in Pakistan territory to target terror camps.

Washington Post:  In the most ominous military confrontation between India and Pakistan since both tested nuclear weapons two decades ago, Pakistan said it shot down two Indian military aircraft over its territory Wednesday and launched strikes in Jammu and Kashmir, reported Washington Post. It added that India claimed it shot down a Pakistani fighter jet in the “aerial encounter.”  The most volatile aspect of the confrontation was Pakistan’s capture of an Indian fighter pilot. A photo was posted by Pakistani military officials of the captured Indian pilot.

Guardian: The Guardian reported that India has called for the safe and immediate return of a fighter pilot seized by Pakistan after being shot down during tit-for-tat incursions over Kashmir that have edged the pair closer to war than at any point in the past 20 years. Pakistan released a video showing the Indian pilot in uniform as he gave his name and rank. India said it “strongly objected to Pakistan’s vulgar display of the injured personnel of the Indian air force in violation of all norms of international humanitarian law”. India's external affairs ministry said it had summoned the acting high commissioner of Pakistan, Syed Haider Shah, and lodged a strong protest at the violation of the Indian air space by Pakistan.

South China Morning Post: Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan called for talks with India and warned of miscalculations that could lead to nuclear war in a national television address on Wednesday, reported South China Morning Post. Imran addressed the media hours after his nation’s air force claimed to have shot down two Indian warplanes and captured a pilot. The warning and overture came amid flaring tensions between the nuclear-armed nations that started Tuesday when the Indian Air Force bombed terror camps in Pakistan.

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