Indian prisoners stand in a queue in a Pakistani jail. File/AFP
Pakistan will release 360 Indian prisoners this month, the foreign office said on Friday, as the nuclear-armed neighbours scale back from a confrontation that prompted world powers to urge restraint.
Tension has been running high since a suicide car bombing by Pakistan-based militants in Indian-controlled Kashmir killed at least 40 Indian paramilitary police on Feb. 14, but the risk of conflict rose dramatically on Feb. 27, when India launched an air strike on what it said was a militant training base.
The following day Pakistan shot down an Indian fighter jet and captured its pilot who was later released.
"Pakistan has decided that 360 Indian prisoners – having breakup of 355 fishermen and five civilians, who have completed their term of sentence – will be released," Mohammad Faisal, spokesman for the Pakistan Foreign Office, told reporters.
He said the prisoners would be released in four batches starting from April 8.
Due to the rocky relations between the two sides, prisoners who have completed their jail terms often languish in each other's jails for months, if not years, afterwards.
According to the lists exchanged by both sides in January, there are 347 Pakistani prisoners in Indian jails, 249 of whom are what the spokesman described as civilians and 98 fishermen.
There are 537 Indian prisoners in Pakistani jails, 483 of whom are fishermen.
"We hope that India will reciprocate this,” the foreign office spokesman said.
Pakistan's F-16 combat jets have all been accounted for, US-based Foreign Policy magazine said, citing US officials, contradicting an Indian air force assessment that it had shot down one of the jets in the February standoff.
"While 54 detained individuals are being investigated, no details linking them to Pulwama have been found so far," the Pakistan's foreign office said,
China on Friday said it was wrong to accuse it of sheltering terrorists because it put a technical hold on the resolution to blacklist Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) terror group chief Masood Azhar as its decision was in line with the rules of an anti-terrorism panel at the UN.
Imran Khan said he received a message from Modi in which the latter extended "greetings & best wishes to the people of Pakistan on the National Day of Pakistan."
Daesh's claim, issued on its AMAQ news agency, came shortly after Sri Lanka said two domestic militant groups, with suspected links to foreign militants, were believed to have been behind the attacks at three churches and four hotels, which wounded about 500 people.
He will hold a meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May in Downing Street and the trip also coincides with events to mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings during World War Two.
The campaign has brought untold stories of refugees to light, who have not only reclaimed their lives in host nations, but in doing so, are active contributors to the development process