Pakistan opens one route for flights from India

A Pakistani Air Force F-16 fighter jet flies during a military parade

A Pakistani Air Force F-16 fighter jet flies during a military parade

A USA count of Pakistan's F-16 jets revealed none to be missing, the U.S. officials told Foreign Policy, undercutting India's position that its air force shot down a Pakistan Air Force jet in a clash that also led to the loss of a Soviet-era Indian Air Force MiG-21 Bison.

"A United States count of Pakistan's F-16 fleet has found that all the jets are present and accounted for, a direct contradiction to India's claim that it shot down one of the fighter jets during a February clash", Lara Seligman of the magazine reported.

Pakistan made clear it had not violated Indian airspace and used "stand-off" weapons from its air force assets while remaining in its own airspace and chosen targets so as to avoid loss of life on the other side.

"The two sightings were at places separated by at least 8-10 km (about 5-6.2 miles)".

"IAF claim of hitting F-16 by their Mig-21 before having been shot down by PAF gets exposed".

The insistence came after Foreign Policy magazine reported on Thursday that Pakistan had invited U.S. media to count its F16s - all supplied by the USA - and none of them were missing.

The Indian Air Force had claimed that it downed a Pakistani F-16 fighter jet in a dogfight that ensued in Pakistan's skies on February 27.

At the time, Indian officials shared shrapnel from an AIM-20 advanced medium range air-to-air missile used during the engagement - one that could not be fired from Pakistan's other fighter aircraft - as proof that F-16s were used in the dogfight. The pilot of that jet, Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, was captured by Pakistan and returned to Indian custody two days later.

Trump says ObamaCare replacement vote will happen after 2020 election
Every Democrat opposed the maneuver in a pair of 51-48 votes, and they were joined by two Republicans: Sens. Experts say the fate of the Affordable Care Act may ultimately be determined by the U.S.

Soon after the shooting down of the IAF MiG-21, piloted by Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, a radio call from Pakistani battalion, 7 Northern Light Infantry (NLI), stated at 12:05 pm: "Yeh enemy ka tabah hua hai jo parinda tha, enemy ka tha". The sources argue that this could only have been a Pakistani F-16, since the PAF's other fighters - JF-17 Thunder and Mirage III/V - were elsewhere in the battlespace.

The reaction from Pakistan was tweeted by Asif Ghafoor, spokesman for the Pakisatni military.

But more than the Indian authorities, sections of the Indian media continue to propagate the myth that indeed a Pakistani F-16 had been downed.

In the weeks leading up to the election, tensions between India and Pakistan escalated to levels not seen in decades after a Pakistan-based militant group killed more than 40 Indian security officers in a February 14 suicide bombing in India-controlled Kashmir.

Even as Pakistan remains in denial mode and claims that none of its F-16 jets were mobilised against India, hard evidence points to the opposite.

The news comes ahead of India's general elections in which Prime Minister Narendra Modi is seeking reelection.

The US official explained that some of the aircraft were not immediately available for inspection after the Pak-India back-and-forth, so it took US personnel a few weeks to account for all the jets.

Recommended News

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.