Home News The Latest: Top Saudi Diplomat Expected in Islamabad

The Latest: Top Saudi Diplomat Expected in Islamabad

The latest on the escalation of tensions between India and Pakistan (local):


Pakistan's foreign minister says a top Saudi diplomat will come to Islamabad later in the day to deliver an important message from the Saudi Crown Prince to the Pakistani-Indian conflict.

Islamabad has asked the international community for help to de-escalate tensions with India in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir.

Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi says Adel al-Jubeir, the Saudi Foreign Minister, will receive a message from Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Thursday.

Qureshi says he phoned Al-Jubeir last night. He did not specify further details.

Al-Jubeir will arrive in Islamabad on its special plane, although Pakistan has temporarily closed its airspace to all civilian traffic between India and India.



Pakistan's Foreign Ministry says India has handed over its file on the deadly Kashmir bombing this month, a sign of détente between the two nuclear-armed rivals.

The February 14 suicide bombing targeted Indian paramilitary forces in Indian-controlled Kashmir, killing 40 soldiers and leading to a dramatic escalation between India and Pakistan.

Ministry spokesman Mohammad Faisal said the Pakistani side will review the "dossier" that Islamabad received diplomatically on Thursday. He refused to provide details of the information that New Delhi communicated.

The Indian exchange of information took place after Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan offered talks with India. Pakistan has also said it will oppose those involved in the bombing of Kashmir if actionable intelligence services are shared.


1 o'clock in the afternoon

India's prime minister says his country's enemies are conspiring to instigate instability through terrorist attacks.

The statements of Prime Minister Narendra Modi came before the tension between Pakistan and the conflict between the two controversial countries of Kashmir. Pakistan said it shot down two Indian fighter planes and captured a pilot on Wednesday.

Modi spoke on Thursday in a videoconference from New Delhi with tens of thousands of Hindu nationalist party leaders.

He did not mention archival Pakistan but said that a united India would "fight, live, work and win".

The videoconference was to cheer on its party officials before the May elections. Opposition leaders criticize campaigning modes during the tense dispute with Pakistan.


11:40 clock

Members of the ruling party of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi have called for more military action against Pakistan, as tensions between the two nuclear-armed neighbors have dramatically escalated this week.

Modi will address tens of thousands of workers and volunteers from his Bharitiya Janata party across the country on Thursday afternoon and call for electoral support in the run-up to the elections, which is referred to as "the world's largest video conference".

Opposition leaders demanded on Twitter that he should cancel the event amid tensions with Pakistan.

Twenty-one opposition parties met in New Delhi on Wednesday. They issued a statement praising the "bravery" of the Indian forces and condemned the "blatant politicization" of the ruling party.


11:15 clock

The authorities in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir have shut down all schools and educational institutions in the region and are calling for parents to leave their children at home in the midst of growing tensions with neighboring India.

The Pakistani Foreign Ministry said Thursday that a major train service connecting the eastern Pakistani city of Lahore with India was suspended until "the security situation improves."

Pakistani airspace remained closed on Thursday for a second day and growled air traffic.

In Muzafarabad, the capital on the Pakistani side of the controversial Himalayan region, there was a complete power outage overnight, as India was concerned about avenging itself after Pakistan said it had shot down two Indian fighter jets and captured a pilot the day before taken.


11 clock

The Pakistani police say the troops stationed in the embattled Kashmiri region continued firing overnight with India and forced villagers living near the embattled border to move to safer locations, even though the two nuclear-armed nations seemed to be marginalized withdraw.

Police officer Mohammad Tahir says the cross-border fire lasted until Thursday, but there were no casualties. Government buildings in Muzafarabad, the capital of the Pakistan-controlled part of Kashmir, serve as shelter for the refugees from the border towns.

This comes one day after the Pakistani military announced that it had shot down two Indian warplanes in Kashmir and captured a pilot when he had answered an air raid on Indian fighter planes in Pakistan the day before.

Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan offered peace talks, and the Indian foreign minister promised restraint.



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