India fires three officers over mistaken missile launch in Pakistan

The Indian Army Air Force fired three officers on Tuesday over an accidental launch of a cruise missile into Pakistani territory after a months-long investigation by New Delhi.

The rocket fired is of the Brahmos type, it is a supersonic surface-to-surface missile, it was launched on March 9 without an explosive charge from a secret military base in northern India and fell in Pakistan about 125 km from the border without causing any harm, or injury or damage.

The Air Force command said in a statement that an investigation into the incident concluded that three Air Force officers were guilty of violating standard operating procedures, which led to the mistaken launch of the missile.

The statement stated that “these three officers were primarily responsible for the incident. The central government immediately terminated their service.”

Islamabad announced that a “supersonic flying object” flying at 40,000 feet had violated its airspace over India and landed in a deserted area.

That day, New Delhi immediately acknowledged the mistake, which Islamabad said threatened the safety of civilian aircraft. Pakistan made a diplomatic protest.

India called the incident “highly unfortunate” and vowed to launch an investigation at the highest level.

Pakistan demanded a joint investigation into the missile launch, calling into question the integrity of India’s nuclear and missile protocols.

But on rare occasions, the two nuclear powers downplay the incident even as their relationship is marred by mistrust and hostility.

Source: AP

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