India on Wednesday backed Iran on its missile strikes on alleged militant bases in Pakistan’s Balochistan province, calling it an act of self-defence.

On Tuesday, Iran attacked alleged bases of militant group Jaish al-Adl using missiles and drones, AP reported. The strikes killed two children and injured three others, Pakistan said.

India’s external affairs ministry on Wednesday said that while it was a bilateral matter between Iran and Pakistan, New Delhi has an “uncompromising position of zero tolerance towards terrorism”. “We understand actions that countries take in their self-defence,” the ministry’s spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal said in a statement.

Founded in 2012, Jaish al-Adl, or the “Army of Justice”, is a Sunni militant group that is claimed to have been responsible for several attacks on the Iranian border police.

Pakistan described Tehran’s strikes on its territory as an “unprovoked violation” of its airspace.

Pakistan’s foreign affairs ministry issued a statement calling the attacks “completely unacceptable” and warning of “serious consequences”. It said that it had lodged a protest with Tehran, and that the head of the Iranian mission in Islamabad had been summoned and told that “the responsibility for the consequences will lie squarely with Iran”.

On Wednesday, Pakistan expelled the Iranian ambassador and recalled its envoy from Tehran.

Al Jazeera quoted Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian as having told his Pakistani counterpart Jalil Abbas Jilani on Wednesday that Tehran respects Pakistan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, but it would not “allow the country’s national security to be compromised or played with”.

Pakistan and Iran have locked horns over Jaish al-Adl’s actions earlier as well. In 2019, the Revolutionary Guard said that Islamabad should go after the armed group before Tehran takes its “revenge”, reported Al Jazeera.

The attack in Pakistan follows Iran’s strikes in northern Iraq on Monday against what it claimed were Israeli “spy headquarters”. On the same day, Tehran also launched attacks against targets allegedly linked to the Islamic State terrorist organisation in northern Syria.