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PM Khan, army chief visit LoC on Defence Day

September 6, 2019
 
PM Khan, army chief visit LoC on Defence Day

Prime Minister Imran Khan and Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa visited on Friday the Line of Control on account of the 54th Defence and Martyrs Day of Pakistan.

They were accompanied by Minister of Defence Pervez Khattak, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and Kashmir Committee Chairman Fakhar Imam.

PM Khan and the army chief will interact with families of the martyrs and troops at the heavily militarized Line of Control, which has often been a site of skirmishes between Pakistan and India.

On the occasion, the civil-military leadership is expected to pay glowing tributes to the martyrs for defending the motherland in the face of all kinds of threats.

The Defence and Martyrs Day is marked to pay tribute to the nation’s martyrs and commemorate the 1965 war. It began with a 31-gun salute in Islamabad and 21-gun salutes in the provincial capitals.

Change of guard ceremonies were held at Quaid-e-Azam’s Mausoleum in Karachi, Allama Iqbal’s Mausoleum in Lahore and the GHQ in Rawalpindi. Air Vice Marshal Hamid Rashid was the guest of honour at the ceremony in Karachi.

Related: ‘We won’t let our martyrs’ sacrifices go in vain’, vows COAS

In Rawalpindi, the change of guard was observed by General Bajwa. He also visited the martyrs’ monument and laid a wreath of flowers there.

This Defence Day comes under the shadow of heightened tensions between Pakistan and India after New Delhi controversially revoked on August 5 the autonomous status of the part of Jammu and Kashmir it controls.

Hours before its move, India curtailed movement and shut down phones and the internet, bringing in hundreds of thousands of troops to the occupied Himalayan territory.

Several Indian and Pakistani soldiers have since been killed in skirmishes along the LoC.

Kashmir has been divided between India and Pakistan since their independence from Britain in 1947.

They have fought two of their wars over the disputed Himalayan territory.

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