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US says it is 'seeking information' on whether Pakistan used F-16s to shoot down Indian jet

File photo of a US-made F-16. Photograph:( Reuters )

Reuters Islamabad, Pakistan Mar 03, 2019, 04.23 PM (IST)

The United States is "seeking information" on whether Pakistan used US-built F-16 jets to down an Indian warplane, the US Embassy in Islamabad said on Sunday, which may violate the F-16 sale agreements between Washington and Pakistan.

Pakistan says it did not use F-16s in shooting down an Indian warplane when it crossed the Line of Control that acts as a de facto border in Kashmir. Islamabad says this was an act of self defence.

"We are aware of these reports and are seeking more information," a US Embassy spokesperson told Reuters. "We take all allegations of misuse of defense articles very seriously."

US often inserts restrictions on how its exported military hardware can be used through so-called end-user agreements. 

Story highlights

'We are aware of these reports and are seeking more information,' the US embassy in Islamabad said. Pakistan may have violated its sale agreement with Washington if it used the F-16s to shoot down Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman's MiG-21.