Five Killed, Six Injured in Kashmir Gun-battles
Five people, including three Muslim militants were killed in insurgency-related violence in the restive Indian state of Kashmir, police said Saturday.
A police spokesman said three Pakistan-based foreign militants were killed in a fierce gun-battle with Indian soldiers in the Satganga forests in the northern border district of Kupwara in Kashmir.
"The encounter was initiated by the militants by firing at a patrol party at 8:30 am (0300 GMT) on Saturday," the spokesman said.
"Our troops returned fire, killing three militants. A soldier from the Indian army also took a bullet injury and died."
The spokesman said the army discovered Pakistani driving licenses in the pockets of the dead militants.
"The encounter is still in progress as there are other militants hiding in the forest."
Meanwhile, Ali Ganai, a commander of a Kashmiri militant outfit was shot dead early Saturday by a rival group at Garoora village, near Bandipora town, some 60 kilometers (37 miles) north of Kashmir's summer capital Srinagar.
Six people were injured when a hand grenade lobbed at a vehicle carrying troops exploded instead among pedestrians in the southern Kashmiri town of Pulwama, some 40 kilometers from Srinagar, police said.
India had initiated a two-month unilateral cease-fire in Kashmir from the end of November, which was rejected by most hardline guerrilla groups based in Pakistan.
Islamabad, however, responded by partially withdrawing troops from along the disputed Kashmiri border.
India accuses Pakistan of arming and supporting a Muslim insurgency in the area of Kashmir administered by New Delhi. The neighbors have fought two wars and a border conflict last year over Kashmir.
Muslim militancy in Indian-administered Kashmir and New Delhi's efforts to contain it have claimed more than 34,000 lives since 1989 -- SRINAGAR (AFP)
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)