- Militants attacked Army headquarters in Uri in Jammu and Kashmir around 5:30 am
- 17 Army personnel killed and 30 injured in the attack
- Heavy casualties occurred because tents and temporary shelters with troops caught fire
- 4 terrorists gunned down by the Army and combing operations still on
- The weapons uncovered from the slain terrorists had Pakistani markings
- DGMO reported Jaish-e-Mohammad’s role in the attack
- HM Rajnath Singh called Pakistan a terrorist state, and expressed disappointment with their “constant support to terrorism”
- PM Narendra Modi said those behind the “despicable attack will not go unpunished”
France Remains at India’s Side
France has condemned the “terrible terrorist” attack and said Paris remains on New Delhi’s side in the fight against terrorism.
France also said it “recalls the importance it attaches to bringing calm and the peaceful settlement of disputes in the region of Kashmir”.
In a statement, the French Foreign Ministry spokesperson said:
France most firmly condemns the terrible terrorist attack perpetrated on 18 September against an Indian army camp in the region of Kashmir. It conveys its condolences to the families of the 17 Indian soldiers killed in this attack. France remains at India’s side in the combat against terrorism. It calls on every State to fight effectively against terrorist groups operating on their territory or from their territory against other countries.
US Condemns Attack
The US on Sunday strongly condemned the dastardly terror attack asserting that it was “committed” with India to “combat terrorism”.
The US Ambassador to India, Richard Verma took to Twitter to express his condolences.
The US State Department also issued a statement in Washington.
“The United States strongly condemns the terrorist attack on an Indian army base in Kashmir during the early morning of 18 September. We extend our condolences to the victims and their families. The United States is committed to our strong partnership with the Indian government to combat terrorism,” John Kirby, Assistant Secretary and State Department spokesperson said in the statement released by the US embassy in New Delhi.
‘One Particular Country Behind Cross-Border Terrorism’: Hamid Ansari
Vice President Hamid Ansari on Sunday said that the attack was the result of “cross-border terrorism by one particular country in our region.”
“My thoughts and prayers are with the families of those whose loved ones have been killed,” Ansari said at the 17th NAM Summit
Attack Shows Pak’s Desire to Use Poison, Not Dialogue: MJ Akbar
MJ Akbar, BJP MP and Minister of State for External Affairs, reacted to the attack saying:
He further commented that the neighbouring country has “reduced itself to ‘pariah status’ in the international community because of its hypocrisy and terror sponsorship”.
Speaking to reporters after Pakistan Prime Minister’s Advisor on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz raised the Kashmir issue at the 17th Non-Aligned Movement Summit, Akbar slammed Pakistan for giving “sanctuary and support, both domestic and international to terrorists” and investing in the evil menace of terrorism.
What Are India’s Options Now? Experts Comment
PM Modi’s assertion that those behind the attack “will not go unpunished” triggered considerable speculation about the options that India could exercise in the current situation.
Some retired army generals favoured a tough response from India.
Former generals sought urgent action against Pakistan, including keeping the “military option open” to deal with terror from its soil.
Manohar Parrikar Visits Injured Soldiers
Parrikar tweeted saying he had reviewed the security situation, and strict action would be taken against the perpetrators.
Pak Army Asks for ‘Actionable Intelligence’
Pakistan refuted as “unfounded and premature” India’s charge that it was behind the attack. Pakistan army spokesman Lt Gen Asim Saleem Bajwa said that following the attack Director General of Military Operation (DGMO) of the two countries discussed the situation along the Line of Control through hotline.
Bajwa reiterated that no infiltration was allowed from the Pakistani soil because of “water-tight arrangements” in place on both sides of LoC and the Working Boundary.
Meanwhile, an alert has been sounded in Pathankot and Gurdaspur, after the attack.
For One Tooth, the Complete Jaw: Ram Madhav
Talking tough, BJP leader Ram Madhav today asserted that days of strategic restraint are over.
Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu also condemned the attack, saying Pakistan needed to be isolated for “abetting terrorists.”
Rajnath Singh Asks Home Secretary to Visit Kashmir
Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi has been asked to go to Kashmir tomorrow by Rajnath Singh to review the situation, according to The Hindu.
J&K Governor, CM Mufti Chair High-Level Meeting
Jammu and Kashmir Governor N N Vohra and Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti chaired a high-level meeting at Raj Bhavan to review the security situation.
The Governor observed that in the background of the Poonch and Uri terror attacks, it was of crucial importance to enhance surveillance on the security of all vital civil and military establishments in the state.
During the discussions, officers of the army, security forces and the state police reported the actions already taken and those underway for safeguarding important establishments and vital installations.
The Governor and CM stressed the need for cohesive action for enforcing a constant vigil on the frontiers, stepping up counter-terrorism operations and effectively maintaining internal security.
They also reiterated the need for very close coordination being maintained among all the departments and agencies for ensuring prompt responses to ensure safety and security of the civilian population. The meeting also discussed various important issues relating to the effective enforcement of the counter-infiltration and counter-terrorism grids along the IB and LoC in the Jammu and Kashmir regions.
The J&K High Court Bar Association suspended work in all courts on Monday, including the High Court, in protest against the Uri terror attack.
Initial Reports Indicate JeM Role: DGMO
Director General of Military Operations (DGMO), Lt General Ranbir Singh in the first press briefing since the attack reported the role of Jaish-e-Mohammad, according to the initial investigations.
Some of the weapons uncovered from the site had Pakistani markings, and the DGMO said he was in touch with his Pakistani counterpart, expressing concerns about the revelation.
The search operation in and around the Uri army camp is still underway, said the DGMO, adding that India is prepared for any “evil design by the adversary”.
The attack took place during the routine turn over of units during the wee hours of the morning, indicating that the terrorists had knowledge of the transition.
J&K CM Mehbooba Mufti Condemns Attack
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti strongly condemned the attack while conveying her heartfelt condolences to the “bereaved families.”
She added that J&K has for long been the victim of Indo-Pak hostility.
Chairman of the United Kashmir People National Party, Shaukat Kashmiri said a “proxy war has been fought in Kashmir for 30 years by extremist groups, funded and supported by Pakistan.”
He added that their only agenda is to kill, and that the civilian government in Pakistan is too weak to control these elements.
4 Recent Attacks on Armed Forces in J&K Before Uri
1. Poonch Attack: Four L-e-T Terrorists Killed
A policeman was killed and two others, including an officer, were injured as security forces and police engaged in a three-day long operation to neutralise 4 Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists. The operation began on 10 September.
2. Pulwama Clashes:12 Injured
Clashes broke out between protesters and security forces in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama district on 11 September. Twelve people were left injured in the clashes.
3. Kupwara: Army Neutralises Three Terrorists
The Indian Army on 21 August foiled an infiltration bid along the (LoC) in Tangdhar sector of Jammu and Kashmir’s Kupwara district, killing three terrorists in an encounter.
4. Pulwama CRPF Camp Attacked
On 1 July, terrorists attacked CRPF camp in Litter village of Pulwama district in Jammu and Kashmir. Grenades were reportedly hurled and four security personnel were left injured in the attack.
Read more here.
Disappointed With Pak’s Support to Terrorism: HM
Other than Singh’s strongly worded message, the Home Minister also expressed his condolences for those who lost their lives in the attack.
Sources Say Attack Alert Issued on 15 September
Sources say there was a specific intelligence alert issued on 15 September of a possible fidayeen attack in Uri. It was sent to all in the “crisis loop”, including the Army command units.
The alert, according to The Indian Express mentioned two things in particular – warnings of a possible fidayeen attack and that it could be carried out by a Pakistani border action team near the LoC. MHA sources reportedly say the attack may have been carried out by Lashkar-e-Taiba, and backed by Pakistani state actors like ISI.
According to sources quoted by News18, terrorists were camped in PoK since 28 August. There will be an MHA meeting regarding the Uri attack at 4:30 PM.
The Home Minister directed that security forces should mount an all-out offensive against terrorists operating in the Valley, sources said.
Army Chief General Dalbir Singh Reaches J&K
Army Chief General Dalbir Singh has arrived in Jammu and Kashmir to take stock of the situation on the ground. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar is scheduled to arrive in the northern state too.
The brigade headquarters situated in Uri, is a town of north Kashmir Baramulla district close to the Line of Control.
Army Troops Were in Tents Which Caught Fire: Army Statement
Indian Army’s Northern Command issued a a statement throwing more light on how the casualty numbers were so high.
Here is the full statement:
Rajnath Postpones Visit to Russia, US; Will Hold a High-Level Security Meet
Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Sunday postponed his scheduled visit to Russia and the United States in the wake of the attack in Uri and the unrest in Jammu and Kashmir and called an emergency meeting to review the situation arising out of the terror strike.
A high-level security meet began at Singh’s residence at 12:15 pm. NSA Ajit Doval, Home Secretary, Intelligence Bureau Chief, Defence Secretary, DGMO of the Indian Army are attending the meeting.
Defence Minister Parrikar, Army Chief General Dalbir Singh to Visit Kashmir
In the wake of the attack on the administrative base of a unit in URI, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar will visit the valley on Sunday to take stock of the situation.
Army Chief General Dalbir Singh will also visit Uri later in the day.
Seventeen soldiers and four militants were killed on Sunday during an attack on an army camp in Jammu and Kashmir’s Uri town, defence officials said.
According to the officials, the gunfight has stopped and now search operations are on to scour the area for more possible militants.
The attack took place at around 5.30 am, when fidayeen (suicide) militants attacked the rear base camp of an infantry battalion in the border town.
The militants had attacked the Rear Base of one of the Army units deployed at Uri (J&K).