The 2016 Uri attack was carried out on 18 September by four Jaish-e-Mohammed insurgents allegedly from Pakistan against an Indian Army brigade headquarters near the town of Uri in the Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir. 19 Indian soldiers were killed in the attack, and 19–30 others were injured. It was reported by the BBC as having been “the deadliest attack on security forces in Kashmir in two decades”.

Jaish-e-Mohammed, a Pakistan-based jihadist organization (designated as a terrorist organization by the India, Australia, the US, and UK among others), was involved in the planning and execution of the attack.At the time it was carried out, the Kashmir Valley was experiencing high levels of violent unrest.

Since 2015, the insurgents had increasingly taken to high-profile fidayeen attacks (suicide attacks) against the Indian security forces: in July 2015, three insurgents attacked a bus and police station in Gurdaspur and earlier in 2016, 4–6 terrorists attacked the Pathankot Air Force Station. Indian authorities blamed Jaish-e-Mohammad for the latter attack.

Also, since 8 July 2016, the Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir has been undergoing continuous unrest following the killing of Burhan Wani, the leader and local commander of the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen.The killing sparked violent protests against the Indian government in the valley, leading to the protests being described as the “largest anti-India protests” against Indian rule in recent years.

At around 5:30 a.m. on 18 September, four insurgents attacked an Indian Army brigade headquarters in Uri, near the Line of Control in a pre-dawn ambush. They were said to have lobbed 17 grenades in three minutes. As a rear administrative base camp with tents caught fire, 17 army personnel were killed during the attack. An additional 19–30 soldiers were reported to have been injured. A gun battle ensued lasting six hours, during which all the four individuals were killed.Combing operations continued to flush out additional militants thought to be alive.

Most of the Indian soldiers had suffered casualties and subsequently those who died were from the 10th battalion, Dogra Regiment (10 Dogra) and 6th battalion, Bihar Regiment (6 Bihar).One of the injured soldiers succumbed to his injuries on 19 September at RR Hospital in New Delhi, followed by another soldier on 24 September, bringing the death toll to 19.

The casualties were primarily believed to have occurred as a result of non-fire retardant transition tents. This was the time of a troops shift, whereby troops from 6 Bihar were replacing troops from 10 Dogra. The incoming troops were housed in tents, which are normally avoided in sensitive areas around the LoC like Uri. The insurgents snuck into the camp breaching heavy security and seemed to know exactly where to strike. Seven of the personnel killed were support staff, including cooks and barbers.

The Deutsche Welle noted that Kashmir was already in international headlines at the time of the Uri attack due to the anti-India protests. It further noted that immediately after the attack, mainstream media in India and Pakistan engaged in “angry” rhetoric towards each other.A video of Indian soldiers chanting “Pakistan, hear this loud and clear: If … war breaks out you will be obliterated” went viral. The Diplomat noted that many Indian media had openly called for a war on Pakistan.

India Today suggested that the fallout from the Uri attack would hurt Pakistani artists in India. Maharashtra Navnirman Sena gave all Pakistani artists in India 48 hours to leave the country and warned that they would be “hunted down”. Subhash Chandra also said Pakistani artists should leave. Terminating Pakistani shows. The Indian Motion Picture Producers Association (IMPPA) decided to ban all Pakistani actors, actresses and technicians in India till the situation returned to normal. However Bollywood artists were divided towards the ban with some justifying it while some questioning its benefits.

On 18 September, the Times of India revealed that the army personnel recovered a map from the attackers which had markings in the Pashtun language and indicated a detailed plan of action. Four AK-47 rifles and four under barrel grenade launchers along with ammunition were also recovered. According to the Indian Army, some of the items had Pakistani markings.This was denied by the National Investigation Agency.

The Diplomat noted that the timing of the attack coincided with the Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to New York to address the United Nations General Assembly the following week. The Diplomat, in another article, said that the attack was “designed” to increase public pressure against the Modi government’s engagement with Pakistan.

It also reported that there was specific intelligence input from the Intelligence Bureau two days earlier that an attack was being planned against army formations close to the LOC.The intelligence agency had said that three fidayeen squads were launched from Pakistan-administered Kashmir. One of them attacked Uri, another went to Poonch where it was engaged by the security forces, and the third is believed to be targeting Srinagar highway.The India Today Television mentioned that, according to unnamed intelligence sources, Pakistan was plotting a “spectacular event” ahead of Nawaz Sharif’s speech to the UN General Assembly.

This is all about the full attack story of uri base camp and surgical strike. 

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