Friday Apr 05 2019

Pakistani military shows all 4 missile seeker heads of downed Indian Mig-21 jet

Picture shows all four missile seeker heads of Indian Mig-21 jet, which were recovered intact from the wreckage of the downed Indian jet. — ISPR

RAWALPINDI: Pakistani military of Friday released images of all four missile seeker heads of downed Indian Mig-21 fighter jet.

"IAF (Indian Air Force) claim of hitting F-16 by their Mig-21, before having been shot down by PAF (Pakistan Air Force) gets exposed," said Major General Asif Ghafoor, director general of the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), in a tweet.

He said that all four missile seeker heads were recovered intact from the wreckage of the downed Indian jet.

Major General Ghafoor said the Pakistan's professional armed forces have been staying humble by not beating the drums for their echoing victory over Indian Air Force during a dogfight between the two air forces in February.

He, however, said that Pakistani military had "more truth" to share in order to debunk Indian claims of downing a Pakistani F-16 fighter.

Earlier, two senior US defense officials with direct knowledge of the situation told Foreign Policy magazine that US personnel recently counted Pakistan’s F-16s and found none missing.

The findings directly contradict the account of Indian Air Force officials, who said that Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman managed to shoot down a Pakistani F-16 before his own plane was downed by Pakistan Air Force.

The count, conducted by US authorities on the ground in Pakistan, casts doubt on India’s version of events, suggesting that Indian authorities may have misled the international community about what happened that day, the magazine said.

Tensions soared between India and Pakistan in the aftermath of the February 14 suicide bombing in Pulwama, occupied Kashmir.

India piled the blame for Pulwama bombing on Pakistan without presenting any proof. The allegations were strongly refuted by Pakistan.

In response, India said it carried out on February 26 air strikes on what it called a militant training camp at Balakot inside Pakistan.

The Indian government was quick to take credit for a “successful" airstrike and put the death toll to over 300. Pakistani officials, as well as the locals, rejected the claims, inviting local and international media to visit the site of the so-called attack where around a dozen trees were the only “casualty”.

The PAF, in retaliatory action, downed two Indian aircraft the next day, capturing Indian pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan, who was later released as a "peace gesture" by Pakistan.