March 2002 News

Ten militants among 12 killed in Kashmir

13 March 2002
The Times of India

SRINAGAR: Ten separatist Muslim militants, an army soldier and a civilian have been killed in Kashmir, a police spokesman said on Wednesday.The Army found the bodies of five militants inside a cave hide-out in the Duraswani forests of the northern Kupwara district overnight, an Army spokesman said in Srinagar.''The militants were found dead inside a cave during a cordon and search operation by the army,'' he said.''It is believed that the five were killed during a continuing seek and destroy operation launched last week by the army in the area.''One of the dead was identified as Usman Jangi, who the Army said was a ''wanted'' foreigner, without revealing his nationality.The Army believe the five were members of Jaish-e-Mohammad, one of two Pakistan-based militant groups India blamed for attacking its national parliament last December.Last week the military launched a massive search operation in the mountainous caves of Kupwara, which borders Pakistan-administered Kashmir, to arrest or ''eliminate'' militants hiding in the area.Meanwhile, two militants and a soldier were killed in a fierce overnight gunbattle near the northern town of Sopore, 50 kilometres (31 miles) north of here.Four other soldiers were injured in the fighting that erupted during a cordon and search operation.Troops also shot dead three separatist militants during an encounter at Budhal village in southern Rajouri district overnight, police said.Police said suspected militants abducted and shot dead a Muslim carpenter in Srinagar overnight.


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