Khawaja Asif warns New Delhi of matching response

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ISLAMABAD: Defence Minister Khawaja Asif on Thursday warned India that Pakistan would respond adequately if its arch-foe imposed a ‘short or full scale’ war on the country.

“We want peace but will inflict heavy losses on India if war hysteria overcame its leadership,” Asif told Radio Pakistan. “Pakistan believes in peace but knows how to respond to any aggression,” he stressed.

His statement came after the Indian army chief refused to rule out the possibility of ‘limited war’ with Pakistan.

“[Because of] frequent ceasefire violations and infiltration bids by our western neighbour (Pakistan), the borders remain live and active. New methods continue to be employed to create unrest in JK (Jammu and Kashmir),” Dalbir Singh had said on Tuesday at an event in New Delhi. “We are acutely aware that the swift, short nature of future wars is likely to offer limited warning time – this calls for maintaining very high levels of operational preparedness at all times,” Singh went on to add.

Tensions are running high between the two nuclear-armed hostile neighbours as their troops have frequently exchanged fire along the Line of Control and working boundary for the past few weeks. Both sides blame the other for provoking hostilities.

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