US reprimands Pakistan for misusing F-16s over aerial combat in Kashmir: Report

US reprimands Pakistan for misusing F-16s over aerial combat in Kashmir: Report

Washington, December 12

The US reprimanded Pakistan Air Force chief in August for misusing F-16 fighter jets by undermining their shared security platforms and infrastructures, a media report here has said, months after the Indian Air Force shot down an F-16 jet of Pakistan Air Force during an aerial combat over Kashmir. 

Andrea Thompson, the then-undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs, wrote a letter to Pakistani Air Force Chief Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan in August over the matter, US News reported on Wednesday.

While the letter written did not directly mention the incidents in the immediate aftermath of the February 26 Balakot airstrikes, US News quoted a source as saying that the communication served as a direct response to America's concerns about the F-16 use over Kashmir in February.

"While we understand from you that these aircraft movements were done in support of national defense objectives, the US government considers the relocation of aircraft to non-US government authorised bases concerning and inconsistent with the F-16 Letter of Offer and Acceptance," Thompson said in his letter.  

A suicide bomber of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror group killed 40 CRPF personnel in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district on February 14.

India launched a counter-terror operation against a JeM training camp in Balakot on February 26. The next day, Pakistan Air Force retaliated and downed a MiG-21 in an aerial combat and captured its pilot Wing Commander Abhinanadan Varthaman, who was later released.

The IAF had said that during the aerial engagement on February 27, one of its MiG-21 Bison shot down a F-16. 

The Indian Air Force on February 28 displayed pieces of the AMRAAM missile, fired by a Pakistani F-16, as evidence to "conclusively" prove that Pakistan deployed US-manufactured F-16 fighter jets during an aerial raid targeting Indian military installations in Kashmir.

"Such actions could subject sensitive US-technologies to diversion to or access by third parties and could undermine our shared security platforms and infrastructures," warned Thompson, who has now left the government.

The State Department and the Embassy of Pakistan has refused to comment on the letter.

According to US News, in her letter, Thompson raised concerns about American access to the bases and the US-made equipment there.

Thompson said it had been four years since Office of Defense Representative of Pakistan – the office that carries out defense cooperation with partner countries – had been allowed to perform an assessment of the security vulnerabilities on the Pakistani bases, the news report said. PTI

Cities

View All

Ban on hookah bars goes up in smoke

Police, Excise officials seize hookahs from restaurants

Doctors complain of heavy workload at Civil Hospital

Say they perform additional duties due to shortage of medica...

Locust attacks reported from Bathinda villages

Agri Dept alert, constantly observing its movement, says ADO

Cops tighten noose around Chinese kite string sellers

The Chinese and zinc-coated thread is dangerous not only for...

MCB project to seal entry points hangs in balance

18 points were to be plugged

Vendors can station carts at vending zone sites: Mayor

No fee for now, vendors identified during survey will be eli...

Civic body staff say no to cheque, bills say otherwise

People visiting offices to pay bills by cheque a harried lot

Five modern meat shops to come up in city soon

Modernisation work at MC slaughter house completed

Stones of 2 foot overbridges laid

To come up at Gurdwara Dukhniwaran Sahib, Kali Mata Mandir

R-Day: Education Minister to hoist National Flag today

School principals, teachers told to remain present at venue

Man held for illegal mining in SYL canal

Caught red-handed, another suspect to be nabbed soon, say co...