Mirage 2000 fighter jet (File Photo)
Five Mirage 2000 fighter jets of the Indian Air Force (IAF) dropped five S-2000 laser-guided bombs on Jaish-e-Mohammed’s terror camps in Pakistan’s Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa on 26 February causing major damage to the targets, reported ThePrint.
According to the report, radar and satellite images procured by India from its own satellites and from neighbouring countries show that two of the three intended targets, including Jaish’s biggest terror camp in Balakot, were conclusively hit in the pre-emptive non-military action by the IAF.
The damage inflicted to the third target, a guest house suspected to have housed trainers and JeM chief Masood Azhar’s brother-in-law Yusuf Azhar alias Ustad Ghauri, could not be ascertained as the satellite view was blocked by the heavy tree-cover on the hilltop.
Contrary to reports that bad weather conditions on the day of the strike prevented clear pictures, ThePrint quoted top defence sources saying that India has managed to get multiple high-resolution pictures of the structures, including of those of repairs being carried out on the roof of one after the attack.
The report further claimed that the satellite images clearly show that Israeli Spice 2000 bombs, each of them weighing around 1,000 kg, did drop on at least two targets.
The images show small black holes in the roof of two of the targeted buildings that appear to be the entry points of the bombs, which are meant to take out heavily-fortified and underground command and control centres.
Just a week after carrying out the strike, the IAF had given the government radar and satellite images showing bombing of the “intended targets” at the Jaish camps, “causing significant damage”.
The news report, which drew a comparison between an April 2018 image of the camp with that of an image taken on March 4, 2019, to show it is practically unchanged, also came amid raging debate over the number of human casualties in the Balakot air strikes.
The report cements government’s claims of the airstrike carried out by the Indian Air Force causing significant "internal damage" to Jaish-e-Mohammed terror camps in Pakistan’s Balakot.
Amidst media reports suggesting minimal damage during these air strikes, opposition parties have been clamouring for clarity.