New Delhi: An internal report of the Home Ministry suggests that terror training camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) have been moved deeper inside Pakistan territory.
The development comes a day after India announced that it had carried out surgical strikes across the LoC and destroyed seven terrorist launch pads.
Central security agencies have informed the Home Ministry that at least 12 terror camps belonging to the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Hizbul Mujahideen and Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) have been shifted from Muzaffarabad in PoK to various areas like Mansehra (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), Naushehra and Jhelum (both in Pakistan’s Punjab). These camps house around 500 armed militants.
“We have been informed by our sources in Pakistan that many terror camps have been vacated and shifted near crowded towns deep inside Pakistan. This has been primarily done to minimise casualties to their assets,” said a senior Home Ministry official.
At the terror camps run with the help of the Pakistan Army and the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) militants are trained to launch attacks against India, said the official.
“While the launch pads are located just along the LoC, where the terrorists halt briefly or wait for an appropriate time to cross over to India, the terror camps are spread over an area and house many people,” said the official.
According to him, it was estimated that around 300 cadres belonged to the LeT in these camps. All the camps that were shifted were located at Pir Chanasi, Aksha Maskar and Tabuk near Muzaffarabad in PoK, said the official.
The central security agencies have pieced together this report with the help of satellite images, ground reports and inputs from western intelligence agencies.