webISLAMABAD: Pakistan´s outgoing military chief warned India Tuesday it would be dangerous to mistake his country´s “restraint” over recent tensions on the border for weakness, as he handed over power to his successor.

The hugely popular General Raheel Sharif spoke at a colourful ceremony welcoming the incoming chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa at a stadium at army headquarters in the garrison city of Rawalpindi, adjacent to the capital Islamabad.

“Unfortunately, in recent months, increasing state terrorism in (Indian) occupied Kashmir, and India´s aggressive steps have put the region´s peace in danger,” Sharif said.

“I want to make it clear to India that considering our policy of restraint a weakness would be dangerous for her,” he said to applause.

“This is reality, that in South Asia, lasting peace and progress is impossible without solution of the Kashmir issue. For that, international community´s special attention is necessary,” he continued.

Tensions between the nuclear-armed neighbours India and Pakistan have spiralled following a deadly assault on an Indian army base in September that New Delhi blamed on Pakistan.

India said it had responded to the September attack by carrying out “surgical strikes” across the heavily militarised border, sparking fury from Islamabad, which denied the strikes took place.