"The United States strongly condemns the terrorist attack on an air force base in the Indian state of Punjab on January 2. We extend our condolences to the victims and their families," State Department spokesman John Kirby said.

The US is committed to its strong partnership with the Indian government to combat terrorism, he said in a statement. "We urge all countries in the region to work together to disrupt and dismantle terrorist networks and to bring to justice the perpetrators of this heinous act," Kirby said.

Heavily-armed Pakistani terrorists yesterday attempted to storm the Air Force base in Pathankot, triggering a day-long gunbattle in which three security men and all the five infiltrators were killed.

The attackers were believed to have infiltrated from Pakistan and there was speculation that they may belong to Jaish-e-Mohammad headed by Maulana Masood Azhar of the Kandahar hijack episode.

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