India fires 3 military officers over Pakistani missile misfire | Government and politics

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NEW DELHI (AP) — The Indian Air Force said Tuesday that three military officers were fired for accidentally firing an unarmed missile at its Pakistani rival in March.

An official investigation found that “deviation from standard operating procedures by three officers” led to the firing of the BrahMos cruise missile at Pakistan, the air force said in a statement.

The missile launched on March 9 landed in Punjab province in eastern Pakistan and damaged a wall in a residential area. No deaths or injuries were reported.

The Pakistani army at the time, he said he had tracked the missile from launch and during its more than three-minute flight inside Islamabad airspace. Pakistani officials demanded an explanation from India, criticizing the launch as a “flagrant violation” that breached the country’s airspace.

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Two days after the launch, the Indian Ministry of Defense said the missile was fired by accident due to a “technical malfunction” during routine maintenance and called the incident “deeply regrettable”.

Pakistan and nuclear-armed India have a history of bitter relations, mainly over the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir, which is divided between them and claimed by both in its entirety. Since their independence from British rule in 1947, the countries have fought two of their three wars in Kashmir.

Relations between the countries have been particularly strained since 2019, when the Pakistani Air Force shot down an Indian warplane in the Pakistan-administered section of Kashmir and captured a pilot in response to an airstrike by an aircraft Indians targeting militants in the town of Balakot, northwest Pakistan. .

India said at the time that its airstrikes targeted Pakistan-based militants responsible for a suicide bombing that killed 40 Indian soldiers in Indian-controlled Kashmir. Pakistan then released the pilot.

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