At United Nations, Pakistan flags rising tension with India

Pakistan's UN envoy asked the president of the United Nations Security Council on Thursday to informally brief the body on the country's escalating tension with neighbouring India and said she will discuss it with UN chief Ban Ki-moon on Friday.

Indian officials said elite troops crossed into Pakistan-ruled Kashmir on Thursday and killed suspected militants preparing to infiltrate India and carry out attacks on major cities, in a raid that raised tensions between the nuclear-armed rivals.

Pakistani U.N. Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi told Reuters she met with New Zealand's UN Ambassador Gerard van Bohemen, who is president of the 15-member Security Council for September.

"I brought to his attention the dangerous situation that is building up in our region as a result of Indian provocation," she said. "Our call to the international community is avert a crisis before there is one."

India's UN mission was not immediately available to comment.

Van Bohemen said he told the council on Thursday that Lodhi had visited him to raise concerns about the situation with India. "I briefed the council on her approach," he said.

Pakistan said two of its soldiers had been killed in exchanges of fire on Thursday, but denied India had made any targeted strikes across the de facto frontier that runs through the disputed Himalayan territory.

The raid raised the possibility of military escalation between the neighbours that could wreck a 2003 Kashmir ceasefire. Both India and Pakistan claim Kashmir in full, but govern separate parts, and have fought three wars since independence from Britain in 1947, two of them over Kashmir.

"Pakistan is showing maximum restraint but there are limits to our restraint if India continues with provocations," Lodhi said. "Right now our effort is just to tell everyone 'this is what's happened so far, watch this space because it's a very dangerous space'."

She said there had already been "ominous signs of unusual movement" along the border with movements of troops and tanks and credible reports of Indian evacuations of some areas.