What the world is saying on rising tensions between India and Pakistan


He added that the U.S. and Pakistan's longtime ally in the region, China, called on the parties to maintain restraint, but the nation "disregarded that." .

"Both are under arrest, and we are treating them with dignity", Ghafoor said.

There was no reply from Modi, but India acknowledged one of its air force planes was "lost" in skirmishes with Pakistan and that its pilot was "missing in action". The calls were reportedly made after Pakistan violated the Geneva Convention by releasing a video showing the pilot tied up on social media. He appeared in good health as he was questioned about his hometown, his aircraft and his mission.

This came shortly after Pakistan said its air force shot down two Indian warplanes after they crossed the boundary between the two nuclear-armed rivals in the disputed territory of Kashmir, and captured two Indian pilots.

The Pakistani regulator said in a tweet: "Civil Aviation Authority of Pakistan has officially closed its airspace until further notice".

Thai Airways has cancelled all Europe-bound flights after Pakistan closed its airspace in the wake of escalating tensions with India. Flight tracking websites showed no commercial flights in the air in Pakistan on Wednesday afternoon and none across most of the Indian states of Punjab, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Jammu & Kashmir. Gen. Asif Ghafoor said. Officials had previously said two pilots had been captured and one had been taken to hospital.

"India does not wish to see further escalation of the situation", she said, speaking from a meeting with Russian and Chinese foreign ministers in China. India has also claimed that it shot down an aircraft from Pakistan, which Pakistan has denied.

The Indian air force has ordered Kashmir's main airport in Srinagar along with at least three others in neighbouring states to close, an official said.

The cause of the crash was unknown.

Another police officer, S.P. Pani, said firefighters were at the site in Budgam area where the warplane crashed.

Bahrain's national carrier Gulf Air also suspended all flights to and from Pakistan.

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One Indian Air Force pilot, forced to ditch his MiG-21 fighter, was taken into Pakistani custody.

"Pakistan's plan was that there should be no casualties or damage, only to show Pakistani capability", said Khan. "One of the aircraft fell inside AJ&K while other fell inside IOK [Indian occupied Kashmir]", Pakistan army spokesman Maj.

"Pakistan would be well advised to ensure that no harm comes to the Indian defense personnel in its custody".

"You have two nuclear powers who have a long history of tension squaring up against each other and now in the start of some kind of military conflict".

Pakistan says the Indian fighters were confronted before they could reach Balakot and dropped four to five bombs in an open field as they fled back across the border.

The escalating hostilities have also affected travel around the Indian subcontinent.

Residents on both sides of the de-facto frontier, the so-called Line of Control, said there were exchanges of fire between the two sides through the night into Wednesday morning. Both sides again presented battling narratives about what sort of targets were struck, with Pakistan trying to make clear that its response was proportional retaliation for India's strikes.

After the Indian planes were downed Wednesday, Kahn said in a televised speech that the two nations should settle their dispute with diplomacy.

Lt. Col. Devender Anand, an Indian army spokesman, said Pakistani soldiers targeted dozens of Indian military positions across the Line of Control throughout the night. Tuesday's airstrikes show he is "willing to take on risk to respond to Pakistan's terrorist provocations", said Alyssa Ayres, a senior fellow with the Council on Foreign Relations and former US state department South Asia.

Pakistani soldiers patrol in the area where Indian planes launched a pre-dawn airstrike on Tuesday inside Pakistan.