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Pakistan conducts strike in Iran in retaliation to drone and missile strikes

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Army on Thursday launched air strikes in Iran, aiming at Baloch groups. This comes two days after Iran’s strikes on Pakistani soil.

“This morning Pakistan undertook a series of highly coordinated and specifically targeted precision military strikes against terrorist hideouts in Siestan-o-Baluchistan province of Iran,” says a foreign ministry statement, adding that a “number of terrorists were killed”.

“Iran is a brotherly country and people of Pakistan have great respect and affection for Iranian people, the foreign ministry statement said.

Pakistan strike reportedly focused on positions held by two Baloch separatist factions, namely the Balochistan Liberation Front and the Balochistan Liberation Army marking a significant escalation in the conflict.

A number of terrorists were killed during the Intelligence-based operation – codenamed ‘Marg Bar Sarmachar’.

The statement said that over the last several years, in our engagements with Iran, Pakistan has consistently shared its serious concerns about the safe havens and sanctuaries enjoyed by Pakistan origin terrorists calling themselves ‘Sarmachars’ on the ungoverned spaces inside Iran.

Pakistan also shared multiple dossiers with concrete evidence of the presence and activities of these terrorists.

However, because of the lack of action on our serious concerns, these so-called Sarmachars continued to spill the blood of innocent Pakistanis with impunity. This morning action was taken in light of credible intelligence of impending large scale terrorist activities by these so called Sarmachars.

This action is a manifestation of Pakistan’s unflinching resolve the protect and defend its national security against all threats. The successful execution of this highly complex operation is also a testimony to the professionalism of the Pakistan Armed Forces. Pakistan will continue to take all necessary steps to preserve the safety and security of its people which is sacrosanct, inviolable and sacred.

The Press Release said at Pakistan fully respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Islamic Republic of Iran. The sole objective of today’s act was a pursuit of Pakistan’s own security and national interest which is paramount and cannot be compromised.

As a responsible member of the international community, Pakistan upholds the principles and purposes of the UN Charter including territorial integrity and sovereignty of member states, Guided by these principles, and an exercise of our legitimate rights within international law, Pakistan will never allow its sovereignty and territorial integrity to be challenged, under any pretext or circumstances.

Iran is a brotherly country and the people of Pakistan have great respect and affection for the Iran People. We have always emplasized dialogue and cooperation in confronting common challenges including the menace of terrorism and will continue to endevaour to find joint solutions.

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