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Imran Khan chairs NSC meeting, authorises army to 'respond decisively' to Indian aggression

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Islamabad, Feb 21: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday chaired the National Security Council meeting in which he authorised the military to respond "decisively" to any aggression by India.

Pakistan's top security body on Thursday said the country was "not involved in any way" in the Pulwama "incident", which was "conceived, planned and executed indigenously".

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan

In a statement issued after a key meeting of the National Security Council chaired by Prime Minister Khan, the country's top civilian and military leadership said the Pakistan government was "determined to demonstrate" that it is capable of protecting its people.

['Will retaliate if India attacks, further demands for evidence against Pak': Imran Khan on Pulwama]

The meeting was convened to discuss the country's security situation in the wake of the Pulwama terror attack by a suicide bomber of the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad terror group that killed 40 CRPF soldiers last week in Jammu and Kashmir.

Pakistan Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa

Pakistan Army Chief Qamar Javed Bajwa

Days after the terror strike by JeM, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said security forces have been given free hand to avenge the dastardly act.

"This is a new Pakistan and we are determined to demonstrate to our people that the State is capable of protecting them and believes that monopoly of violence stays with State," said a statement issued after the meeting, according to the Radio Pakistan.

"The incident was conceived, planned and executed indigenously," the statement said, referring the Pulwama terror attack as just an "incident."

The dastardly terrorist attack in Pulwama took place on Feb 14

The dastardly terrorist attack in Pulwama took place on Feb 14

The statement said Prime Minister Khan has authorised the armed forces of Pakistan to "respond decisively and comprehensively to any aggression or misadventure by India." In a video message earlier this week, Khan said Pakistan was not involved in the attack in Kashmir.

40 CRPF personnel were martyred in Pulwama terrorist attack

40 CRPF personnel were martyred in Pulwama terrorist attack

India rubbished Khan's comments, saying disclaiming Pakistan's link with terrorist attacks is an oft-repeated excuse by the "nerve centre" of terrorism. In a statement, the Ministry of External Affairs said India was not surprised that Khan refused to acknowledge the attack on India's security forces in Pulwama as an act of terrorism, adding his offer to investigate the attack if provided proof is a "lame excuse".

[Have fulfilled sanctions on Jaish-e-Mohammad says Pakistan]

Ahead of the NSC meeting Thursday, Prime Minister Khan and Army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa held a one-on-one meeting during which they discussed region's security situation. The meeting was attended by Army chief General Bajwa, services chiefs, heads of intelligence agencies, security officials and federal and state ministers for finance, defence, foreign affairs and interior.

OneIndia News with PTI inputs

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