Pakistani teen killed in fresh cross-border clash

Pakistani teen killed in fresh cross-border clash

ISLAMABAD - A teenage Pakistani girl was killed and another child wounded in the latest round of cross-border firing with Indian troops near the eastern city of Sialkot on Saturday, officials said.

The incident comes a day after New Delhi claimed a Pakistani fishing crew suspected of involvement in "illicit" activities blew up their boat after trying to evade capture at the hands of the Indian navy.

"Indian BSF (Border Security Force) yet again resorted to unprovoked firing on working boundary near Sialkot today," a Pakistani military statement said Saturday.

"13-years-old Sumaira, resident of... Zafarwal sector embraced martyrdom due to the firing (and) 8-year-old Mursaleen of... Shakargarh sector got injured." Pakistani paramilitary forces responded "befittingly" to Indian fire, the statement added.

The clash comes three days after two Pakistani paramilitary soldiers were killed in cross-border firing in the same area, spurring a strong protest from Islamabad.

Recent exchanges of fire across the de facto border between India and Pakistan in Kashmir, which both countries administer in part but claim in full, have killed at least 21 civilians and forced thousands to flee their homes.

The nuclear-armed neighbours, who have fought two wars over Muslim-majority Kashmir, have traded blame for the upsurge in firing and shelling which started on October 6 last year.

India called off peace talks in August after Pakistan first consulted Kashmiri separatists, a move some saw as a sign of a tougher stance by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's new right-wing government.

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