Pakistan hands back captured Indian pilot


Pakistan has freed an Indian fighter pilot captured after his plane was shot down in Pakistanadministered Kashmir.
Wing Commander AbhinandanVarthaman was handed over to Indian officials on Friday at the only legal border crossing with Pakistan.
Minutes earlier, the pilot said on Pakistani TV that he was ‘very impressed’ by the Pakistan army.
On Thursday Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan said the pilot’s release was a ‘peace gesture’ to India.
India and Pakistan both nuclear powers claim all of Kashmir, but each cotnrols only parts of it.
The pilot is being hailed as a hero in India, with fireworks being set off in the capital Delhi.
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Praising the pilot, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the nation was ‘proud of your exemplary courage’.
What does the pilot say?
In what appeared to be an edited statement aired on Pakistan TV, the wing commander described how he was shot down and rescued from an ‘agitated’ crowd by Pakistani soldiers.
‘The Pakistan army looked after me really well, they are very professional,’ the pilot said while in uniform, adding that he saw potential for peace.
What happened to the pilot?
Pakistan’s military spokesman said that Pakistan fighter jets had carried out ‘tsrikes’ exactly what they did remains unclear in Indianadministered Kashmir on Wednesday.
Two Indian air force jets then responded, crossing the de facto border that divides Kashmir. ‘Our jets were ready and we shot both of them down,’ Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor said.
He said that one Indian pilot was in the custody of the Pakistani army.
Images then circulated of Wing Commander AbhinandanVarthaman’s capture, which were condemned for what appeared to be a physical attack at the hands of residents in Pakistancotnrolled Kashmir, but also praised because of the actions of the Pakistani soldiers who intervened to create a barrier.

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