Washington, February 13: United States intelligence chief Dan Coats on Tuesday warned that Pakistan-backed terrorist groups would continue to carry out attacks inside India, thus risking escalation of tension between the two neighbours.
The remarks made by Dan Coats, Director of National Intelligence, came three days after Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorists attacked the Sunjuwan Military Camp in Jammu, killing 10 people including seven soldiers.
“In fact, Pakistan will continue to threaten US interests by deploying new nuclear weapon capabilities, drawing closer to China, restricting counter-terrorism cooperation and maintaining its ties with terrorists outfit,” Coast said in his testimony before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.
“Terrorist outfits supported by Pakistan will continue to take advantage of their safe haven in the country to plan and conduct attacks in India and Afghanistan, including against US interests,” Coats said during the hearing on ‘Worldwide Threat Assessment’ of the US intelligence community.
Coat said Pakistan’s perception of its eroding position relative to India, reinforced by endemic economic weakness and domestic security issues, almost certainly will exacerbate long-held fears of isolation and drive Islamabad’s pursuit of actions that run counter to US goals for the region.
Without specifically referring to any terrorist incident by Pakistan-based groups, Coats told the lawmakers that he expects tension between the two Asian neighbours.
“Relations between India and Pakistan are likely to remain tense, with continued violence on the Line of Control and the risk of escalation if there is another high-profile terrorist attack in India or an uptick in violence on the Line of Control,” Coats said.
Meanwhile, on Tuesday the body of another soldier was recovered from the encounter site inside the Sunjuwan Military camp here, taking the death toll in the terror attack to 10, including six Army personnel and three terrorists of the JeM.
The body of the Army jawan was recovered during the clearance operation at the camp last night, Jammu-based Army PRO Lt Col Devender Anand.
On Saturday morning, a group of heavily-armed men struck the sprawling camp of the 36 brigade of the J&K Light Infantry before dawn on February 10, killing six people including five soldiers.