Live: Recognise India's legitimacy to ensure its security against cross-border terror, says France

Twelve Indian Air Force (IAF) Mirage 2000 fighters crossed the Line of Control in the wee hours of Tuesday and destroyed a major terrorist camp based in Pakistan.

Photo: Reuters

NEW DELHI: At last twelve Mirage 2000 fighter jets of the Indian Air Force (IAF) crossed the Line of Control (LoC) at 3:30 AM on Tuesday and destroyed a massive Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) terrorist camp in Pakistan's Balakot in which ''a large number of terrorists'' were eliminated. The IAF sources said the Mirage fighters dropped approximately 1000 kg of bombs on terror camps across the LoC and completely destroyed it. It was a "non-military, pre-emptive airstrikes" carried out by the IAF fighters across the Line of Control which mainly targeted terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed.

Pakistani military confirmed that the IAF jets entered deep into Pakistan and reached Balakot, a town in Mansehra district in Pakistan's Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa before Pakistani Air Force tried to intercept them. Pakistani armed forces spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor claimed that IAF jets were intercepted by PAF near Balakot.

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''The IAF fighters 'released payload in haste while escaping' which fell near Balakot,'' Major General Asif Ghafoor said. He added that there were no casualties or damage to the Pakistani side.

Also read: India strikes back, bombs Alpha 3 control rooms and terror camps of JeM in Pakistan

It has also emerged that Prime Minister Narendra Modi followed the real-time updates of IAF's pre-dawn operation to strike down terror camps in Pakistan on Tuesday. PM Modi supervised the entire operation from the situation room at Rashtrapati Bhavan's South Block. Top intelligence sources told Zee Media that multiple options were given to Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa who chalked out the entire strike plan. National Security Advisor Ajit Doval had also detailed the PM on the IAF operation earlier. After the successful completion of the operation, top foreign diplomats of the US, China, Russia, UK, Brazil, Australia, Indonesia, Turkey and six ASEAN nations were duly briefed about today's operation.

Here are the live updates:

26 February 2019
22:01 PM

Pakistan summons acting Indian High Commissioner, vows strong response after IAF raids in Balakot.

21:53 PM

France calls on India and Pak to exercise restraint to avert any risk of military escalation and preserve strategic stability in the region. Resumption of dialogue between Islamabad-New Delhi necessary to initiate peaceful settlement of differences, says acting spokesperson of France's Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs

21:52 PM

Recognise India's legitimacy to ensure its security against cross-border terror, says France


21:49 PM

Army, Navy, IAF chiefs meet PM Modi and NSA Ajit Doval, discuss military preparedness in the event of any retaliation from Pakistan.

20:57 PM

Watch: People at Attari-Wagah border dance and celebrate IAF raids in Pakistan's Balakot.


20:10 PM

The RSS congratulates the government and the IAF for the successful airstrikes on terror camps in Pakistan, says it translated the feelings and anger of millions of Indians.


19:53 PM

India had made it clear that terrorism must be eradicated, we had given many chances to Pakistan, therefore, India was forced to take action so that these things can be stopped: MoS VK Singh on IAF raids in Pakistan

19:48 PM

Cinema Exhibitors Association has boycotted Indian content, no Indian movie will be released in Pakistan. Also, I have instructed PEMRA to act against made in India advertisements, says Choudhary Fawad Hussain, Pakistan's I&B Minister.


19:09 PM

I am happy that all parties in one voice praised the security forces and supported the Modi govt's anti-terror operations, says EAM Sushma Swaraj after all-party meet ends.


19:04 PM

 In the all-party meeting today, EAM Sushma Swaraj informed the leaders that she spoke to US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo over the IAF airstrikes on JeM terror camps in Pakistan's Balakot, reports ANI.

18:44 PM

We have appreciated the efforts of the armed forces, they always have our support to end terrorism. Another good thing is that it was a clean operation which specifically targeted terrorists and terror camps, says Ghulam Nabi Azad, Congress after all-party meet:


18:42 PM

Punjab is on alert, I will be touring bordering areas on Wednesday. We are ready for any eventuality. I told the Union Home Minister that if there is anything that Punjab can do we are there to for the defence of our country: Punjab CM Amarinder Singh

18:18 PM

Ceasefire violation by Pakistan in Nowshera sector and Akhnoor sector. Pakistan also violated ceasefire in Krishna Ghati sector at 5:30 PM today, reports ANI.


18:10 PM

Surgical strikes after Uri and now air strikes in self-defence, both have given the message to the world that for the security of the country, India's soldiers and government can go to any extent, says BJP chief Amit Shah.


18:07 PM

 Ceasefire violation by Pakistan in Nowshera sector and Akhnoor sector, hours after IAF's airstrikes in Pakistan's Balakot, reports ANI.

17:29 PM

The all-party meeting called by EAM Sushma Swaraj hours after IAF carried out airstrikes targeting Jaish-e-Mohammed terror camps in Pakistan's Balakot currently underway at Jawaharlal Nehru Bhawan. 


17:19 PM

Australia urges both sides to exercise restraint, avoid any action which would endanger peace and security in the region and engage in dialogue to ensure that these issues are resolved peacefully, says Australian FM Marise Payne.

17:11 PM

Australian government is concerned about relations between India and Pakistan following the horrific terrorist attack in Jammu and Kashmir on 14 February, which Australia has condemned, says Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne.

16:55 PM

Pakistan will take international media to the area of IAF airstrikes, helicopters are being readied, right now weather is bad, will fly when weather permits, says Pak Shah Mahmood Qureshi.

16:51 PM

The country is in safe hands, it's will power of PM Modi that has led to the IAF action today. We had political leadership in PM Modi which decided this time to act. We acted in a responsible manner, protected India's interest and ensured that we didn't violate international norms, says BJP leader Ram Madhav.


16:43 PM

Pakistan destroying evidence after Indian Air Force's Mirage 2000 fighter jets raid JeM terror camps in Balakot, claim intelligence source. READ

16:41 PM

Pakistan has summoned joint Parliamentary session after IAF operation in Balakot, reports ANI.

16:40 PM

IAF airstrikes 'act of aggression', says Pakistan; PM Imran Khan orders forces to remain prepared for all eventuality, say reports.  

16:35 PM

Punjab has put its border districts on high alert in the wake of the IAF airstrikes across the Line of Control, undertaken by India as a retaliatory measure in the aftermath of the Pulwama terror attack: CM Amarinder Singh.

16:33 PM

Pakistan summons joint parliamentary session after IAF operation in Balakot, reports ANI.

15:57 PM

It's an excellent operation that has been undertaken. It was certain it'll happen, it was writing on the wall as PM had announced it. We've seen that earlier when PM announced after Uri we went in for surgical strike 1. This is surgical strike 2.0, says ex-Army Chief General Bikram Singh.


15:55 PM

''We have done what any self-respecting country would do. We are proud of what our forces have done for us. They are our shield, and they have behaved exactly like a shield. We are very proud. Salute to our fighters,'' says Kamal Hassan on IAF raids. 



15:53 PM

A total of six bombs were dropped on Pakistan-based terrorist camps by the IAF's Mirage 2000s fighters, reports ANI.

15:48 PM

Satisfied that Indian Govt has had such a rapid response in informing Heads of Missions. The info is that they did not affect any civilian or any Pak military installation, that it was direct attack due to credible intelligence received, says Hans Castellanos, Dean of Diplomatic Corps, according to ANI. 


15:35 PM

India has committed uncalled for aggression to which Islamabad shall respond at the time and place of its choosing, says Pakistan's National Security Committee after a meeting chaired by PM Imran Khan, reports ANI.

15:32 PM

In Assam, Congress president Rahul Gandhi congratulates IAF pilots for Tuesday's successful airstrikes in Pakistan. 


15:26 PM

Other key Jaish figures targeted in today's IAF raids were - Mufti Azhar Khan Kashmiri, the head of Kashmir operations and Ibrahim Azhar, the elder brother of Masood Azhar who was also involved in the IC-814 hijacking, reported news age by ANI.


15:25 PM

Chinese diplomat was also briefed by Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale on the IAF's airstrikes in Balakot, reports ANI.


15:22 PM

Foreign diplomats from the US, UK, Russia, Australia, Indonesia, Turkey and six ASEAN nations were briefed by Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale on IAF airstrikes across LOC in Pakistan's Balakot, reports ANI.

15:11 PM

According to news agency ANi, here are the key Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) operatives targeted in today's air strikes:- Maulana Ammar (associated with Afghanistan and Kashmir ops) and Maulana Talha Saif (brother of Maulana Masood Azhar and head of its preparation wing).


14:28 PM

Government sources said that Tuesday's operation was intelligence based counter terror strike not a military action for sake of war. The airstrikes demolished entire terror set up in the suicide bombing training centre in Balakot and over 300 terrorists were eliminated.

12:58 PM

JeM's Yusuf Azhar alias Mohammad Salim alias Ustaad Gohri who was targeted today by IAF in Balakot across LOC was on the Interpol list and among the most wanted in India.


12:47 PM

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said that the airstrike was grave aggression by India against Pakistan. He added that this is a violation of LoC and Pakistan has the right to retaliate and self defence.


12:32 PM

NSA Ajit Doval along with Indian Army Chief Bipin Rawat and IAF Chief BS Dhanoa is reviewing the security situation on the borders after IAF strikes at JeM terror camp in Balakot across LoC.


12:23 PM

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has called an all-party meeting at 5pm today.



12:23 PM

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has briefed both President and Vice-President about the  Indian Air Force strike at JeM terror camp in Balakot across LoC.

11:38 AM

India struck the biggest terror camp of Jaish in Balakot, many terrorists eliminated, said Vijay Gokhale

11:35 AM

 India struck the biggest terror camp of Jaish in Balakot in which large number of terrorists were eliminated, said Vijay Gokhale.


11:34 AM

Jaish-e-Mohammad has been active in Pakistan for the last two decades and led by Azhar Masood, who is based in Bahawalpur, said Gokhale.

11:32 AM

Foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale briefs the media in Delhi on IAF's airstrikes inside PoK.


11:26 AM

Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh said that each time Pakistan will attack us, it will definitely get reply from Indian forces.




11:18 AM

Actor and Makkal Needhi Maiam (MNM) Chief Kamal Haasan saluted the soldiers and said: "Our 12 return safely home after wreaking havoc on terrorist camps in Pakistan. India is proud of its heroes."

11:17 AM

Three attacks were carried out in Balakot, Chakothi and Muzaffarabad at 3.45 am, 3.48 am and 3 .58 am respectively.

11:16 AM

Karnataka Chief Minister Kumaraswamy and former UP Chief Minister Mayawati have also congratulated IAF over the air strikes.

11:10 AM

Union minister Prakash Javadekar has lauded IAF and said that necessary step is taken by Air Force.

11:05 AM

Air strikes in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region were based on locations provided by on ground intelligence sources.

11:01 AM

One of the targets destroyed by IAF Mirage jets was in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa area of Pakistan, sources said.


10:55 AM

Sources said that Pakistani F16s were scrambled to retaliate against IAF Mirage 2000s but turned back due to size of Indian formation. The operation was coordinated by Western Air Command.

10:54 AM

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee has lauded IAF over the feat and created a new acronym for the Indian Air Force, saying IAF means "India's Amazing Fighters".

10:50 AM

Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale to address press conference on IAF operation at 11.30 am.

10:49 AM

The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) meet of the Central Government is over. The meeting was chaired by PM Modi.

10:46 AM

Former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has congratulated IAF for the strikes in PoK.


10:24 AM

Pakistan has denied that Indian aircrafts managed to cross LOC and completely destroyed terror camps in PoK.


10:20 AM

Sources said that around 300 terrorists from JeM, LeT and Hijbul Mujahideen are believed to be killed in the airstrike. 

10:18 AM

Sources said that JeM has a strong foothold in Balakot region. Besides JeM, LeT & Hijbul Mujahideen also have their operational headquarters in Muzzaffarabad and Kotli.

10:12 AM

Radio Pakistan confirmed that Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has summoned an emergency meeting in Islamabad to discuss the security situation. 

10:07 AM

Top government sources siad that the Balakot camp is spread around 6 to 7 acres and it is expected that at least 200 terrorists must have died in the airstrikes.

10:03 AM

Meeting of Cabinet Committee on Security underway at PM Modi's official residence 7, LKM.


09:59 AM

UP Minister Siddharth Nath Singh lauded the IAF, saying that it has showcased bravery while carrying out the strike. Singh also praised PM Modi for taking such actions against terrorism.

09:56 AM

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has tweeted saluting the bravery of Indian Air Force pilots for striking terror targets in Pakistan.


09:55 AM

Laser-guided bombs were used by IAF Mirage 2000 fighter jets to decimate JeM terror camps within PoK.

09:50 AM

Indian Air Force has put on high alert all air defence systems along the LoC and international border to respond to any possible action by Pakistan.

09:47 AM

According to a report in Pakistan-based newspaper Dawn, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has summoned an emergency meeting to review the situation after IAF's airstrikes.

09:45 AM

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is meeting Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley over the strikes. 

09:41 AM

PM Narendra Modi cleared strikes on terror camps in Pakistan within 24 hours of Pulwama terror attack.

09:39 AM

Congress President Rahul Gandhi has reacted to the airstrikes by saluting the pilots of Indian Air Force.


09:37 AM

Minister of state for agriculture Gajendra Singh Shekhawat posted a tweet appreciating PM Modi over the strikes. However, the government is yet to confirm the airstrikes.


09:35 AM

Balakot, Chakothi and Muzaffarabad terror launch pads across the LoC destroyed in IAF air strikes. Sources said that JeM control rooms also destroyed.


09:31 AM

The Indian Air Force and Indian Army are likely to address a press conference soon to provide details about the IAF operation across the LoC.

09:29 AM

BJP leader and Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy has called the strike "self-defence", stressing that Pakistan is "our own territory".


09:14 AM

Sources said that National Security Advisor Ajit Doval had briefed Prime Minister Narendra Modi about operation and assessment. 

09:08 AM

Sources said that the decision to strike back Pakistan was taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself in the aftermath of Pulwama terror attack in which 40 CRPF personnel were martyred on February 14.

09:03 AM

Indian Army sources say the airstrike has destroyed Balakot, Chakoti, Muzaffarabad pads. The Alpha-3 control rooms of terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad is also destroyed.

08:59 AM

The problem now becomes PM Imran Khan’s commitment to his country – “Pakistan will not think about responding, Pakistan WILL respond”. What shape will response take? Where will response be? Will India have to respond to Pakistan’s response?, asks former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah.

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