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Pakistan calls back high commissioner from India

Pakistan calls back high commissioner from India

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi has vowed "befitting reply" to the "perpetrators of the heinous attack and their patrons", in an oblique reference to Pakistan.

Modi has promised a strong response and says he has given the military a free hand to tackle cross-border militancy. There have been at least 10 suicide attacks in the region since 1989. The civilian who died was identified as Mushtaq Ahmad.

A comment piece in the Global Times accused India of failing to provide "solid evidence" against Azhar and said China rightly practised caution against listing him as a terrorist.

"India in recent years has aggressively blamed China for allying with Pakistan in shielding terrorists".

"We are at a risky moment, and authorities must do everything they can to uphold the rule of law", said Aakar Patel, head of Amnesty India.

Monday's fighting in Kashmir triggered anti-India protests and clashes, with local residents, mainly youths, trying to march to the site of the gunbattle in solidarity with the rebels.

Briefing media after the cabinet meeting on Friday, Jaitley said the perpetrators of the attack would pay a "heavy price" for it.

Tensions escalated in the aftermath of a suicide attack in disputed Kashmir, with nine people killed Monday in a gunbattle that broke out as Indian soldiers scoured the area for militants.

The gunfight comes four days after a suicide bomber carried out a vehicle bomb blast targeting paramilitary convoy in the district, killing at least 40 troopers.

A police spokesman in the northern state of Jammu and Kashmir said Indian troops had cordoned off Pinglan village in Kashmir's Pulwama district, where a suicide bomber rammed into a convoy of paramilitary police on Thursday.

At the peak of a 2016 civilian uprising triggered by the killing of a charismatic Kashmiri rebel leader, Hooda called for all sides to take a step back from the deadly confrontation, suggesting that political initiatives be taken instead.

The soldiers killed in the operation belonged to the 55 Rashtriya Rifles.

The attack has fuelled tensions between India and Pakistan, and led to a backlash against some Kashmiris living in other parts of India.

Pakistan-based terror group Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) has claimed responsibility for the attack. "We hope relevant regional countries will cooperate to cope with the threat of terrorism and jointly uphold regional peace and stability", China's foreign ministry said in a statement.

Users in US, Britain, Holland, Norway and Australia were unable to access Pakistan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs website on Saturday, the report said.

Iran also condemned the attack and termed any kind of violence as "unacceptable". He said that while no one wants war, a mix of diplomatic, military and economic pressure is needed.

United Nations also took serious cognizance of the attack and said the perpetrators should be brought to justice.

The statement offered Egypt's honest condolences to the families of the victims and wished the injured speedy recovery. While the diplomatic retaliation has already ensued, according to security observers, a military retaliation can not be ruled out either.

Umair is thought to have entered Indian Kashmir from Pakistan in September to head the Jaish in the region.

India is slated to play Pakistan in the round-robin stage of the World Cup on June 16 in Old Trafford, Manchester.

In a fresh encounter that happened early today, the mastermind behind the deadly terrorist attack at Pulwama, Kashmir had been killed.

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