In a statement calculated to raise Indian hackles just days before Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar's visit to Islamabad, Pakistan's army chief Gen Raheel Sharif has warned India of a "befitting response to provocation" along the Line of Control (LoC).
"Let there be no doubt that any provocation along LoC and Working Boundary will meet a befitting response," a statement by the Pakistan army quoted Gen Sharif as saying on Thursday.
"Repeated Indian ceasefire violations on the Working Boundary and the LoC in recent past were a distraction for Pakistan from campaign versus terrorism and it affects regional stability," the statement said.
India blames Pakistan for creating provocation along the border, amid increasing incidents of unprovoked shelling from the Pakistani side in recent months, particularly in the icy heights of Jammu.
Despite the restoration of democracy in Pakistan, the military is perceived as still the most powerful force in the country, and no civilian government can really dare to rub it the wrong way.
Military spokesman Major General Asim Saleem Bajwa said that the army chief made the comments while visiting areas affected by cross-border firing near Sialkot and met troops and residents.
Jaishankar will travel to Islamabad on 3 March for a two-day visit, seven months after India cancelled foreign secretary-level talks over the Pakistani envoy's consultations with Kashmiri separatists.