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India doesn’t want further escalation of tension: Sushma

New Delhi, Feb 27: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj Wednesday said India is not keen on seeing further escalation of tensions between India and Pakistan even as she urged all countries to show zero tolerance against “terrorism”.

Referring to Pulwama, Swaraj said such attacks are a “grim reminder for the need for all the countries to take decisive actions against it”.

 

Swaraj was speaking at the 16th Russia-India-China (RIC) Foreign Ministerial Meeting being held in Wuzhen, China Wednesday.

The foreign minister said the international community has spoken in unison to eliminate Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) and other militant groups based out of Pakistan following the 14-February attack that killed 49 CRPF personnel.

“Pakistan denied any knowledge of the attack and outrightly dismissed claims by Jaish-e-Mohammed,” said Swaraj.

“In the light of continuing refusal of Pakistan to acknowledge and act against JeM based on its territory and based on credible information that the group was planning other attacks on various parts of India, Government of India decided to take preemptive action.”

The Indian Air Force (IAF) conducted “non-military preemptive strikes against JeM’s biggest camp” in Balakot, Pakistan, Tuesday.

Swaraj said the target selected by the IAF was in order to avoid civilian casualties.

“This was not a military operation. No military installations were targeted. The limited objective of the preemptive strike was to act decisively against JeM in order to preempt another attack in India,” she added.

“India does not wish to see further escalation of the situation. India will continue to act with responsibility and restraint,” she said.

The last RIC Foreign Ministerial Meeting was held in New Delhi on 11 December 2017.