Srinagar: The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has reopened two vital air-bases, barely 100 km from Srinagar, in Kotli and Rawalkot, close to Line of Control (LoC) in Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir (PoK), Times Now reported Thursday.
According to the report, the Kotli air-base will be in the area of the Pakistan Army’s 3 PoK brigade, which is part of 23 Division. The report also says over a hundred air-defence troops have been moved to Kotli.
Similarly, the Rawalkot air-base comes under 2 PoK Brigade of 12 division. This air-base has been closed for four years.
“The reopening of PAF facilities so close to the LOC is a threat, while the strengthening of the base in Shamsi in Baluchistan and the construction of a new army cantonment near the PAF base in Jacobabad, Sind, is a sign of growing unrest in those provinces,” the report says.
It further adds that the reopening of both Kotli and Rawalkot is a precautionary measure as is the deployment of small numbers of F-16 fighters in different airfields all over the country.
The report further said that the PAF’s 403 Squadron– of helicopters– has moved to Shamsi where communication and radar networks are being readied.
“The Pakistan Army’s cantonment is coming up near Shahbaz, the PAF base in Jacobabad, Sind. It has acquired over 7,000 acres of land,” the report says.
“This is in addition to a new PAF base in Nasirabad, in Baluchistan. The Pakistan government has already acquired 26,000 acres for the base,” it adds.