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Pakistani fighter jets did not enter Indian airspace after Balakot: Indian Air Force chief BS Dhanoa

He also said while the IAF had achieved its objectives, PAF didn't.

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Pakistani fighter jets did not enter Indian airspace after Balakot: Indian Air Force chief BS Dhanoa
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Indian Air Force (IAF) BS Dhanoa has said Pakistan Air Force (PAF) fighter jets did not enter Indian airspace when they attempted to retaliate a day after the Balakot airstrike. He also said while the IAF had achieved its military objectives, the PAF had failed to do so.

"Let me tell you on Balakot, they (PAF) didn't come into our airspace," Air Chief Marshal Dhanoa said at a press conference on Monday. "The major thing you need to consider is what the objectives were. What was our objective, and what was their objective? Our objective was to strike in Balakot, and we achieved it. Their objective was to strike some installations of our Army, and they were unable to do that," he added.

"That's the bottom line… Did you achieve your stated military objective or not? We achieved our military objective, they did not achieve their military objective. And none of them, let me tell you, crossed the Line of Control into our territory," Dhanoa said.

India's February 26 airstrikes on a terrorist training camp in the Balakot area of Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province was the first time India had crossed the international border with Pakistan since the 1971 war. While India termed the strike successful, Pakistan claimed that the Indian bombs had hit an empty patch of land. Pakistan's military intelligence nexus had however restricted access to the site which India bombed for weeks afterwards.

A day after India's strike, PAF aircraft attempted to bomb an Indian Army installation in Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan managed to shoot down an IAF MiG-21, which had crossed into Pakistani airspace while shooting down a PAF F-16.

Dhanoa also commented on the fact that Pakistan's airspace has been effectively closed since then. He pointed out that India too had shut airspace in some sectors. But, he pointed out that airspace closure was only for three hours.

"Only on 27 February (2019) we had stopped Srinagar airspace for 2-3 hours, rest of it we didn't allow tension with Pakistan to dictate our civil aviation because our economy is much bigger and much stronger as compared to theirs," he said.

"They (Pakistan) have closed their airspace that is their problem. Our economy is vibrant and air traffic is a very important part and you have noticed that Air Force has never stopped our civil air traffic," he said.

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