Kashmir Rebels Bomb Hospital, Behead Three
26 July 2004
Jammu: Separatist rebels decapitated a 55-year-old man and his two children in Indian Kashmir because they suspected them of being informers for security forces, police said on Monday. In another incident, separatists aimed a grenade at soldiers visiting a hospital in northern Kashmir, wounding 26 civilians and two soldiers. Police said the soldiers went to the government hospital in Baramulla for treatment. 'Militants lobbed a grenade near the outpatient department, where some Border Security Force personnel had come for treatment,' a police officer said. Authorities say the guerrillas could be trying to scupper peace moves between India and Pakistan by stepping up attacks on civilians and security forces in Kashmir. More than 200 people have been killed this month in Indian Kashmir in a surge of violence that has coincided with the start of peace talks between India and Pakistan. The two countries' foreign ministers held talks in Islamabad last week and renewed their vows to settle their differences over the disputed Himalayan region, divided since the Indian subcontinent won independence from Britain in 1947. On Sunday, a group of nine militants barged into the home of Mohammed Shafi in a remote village in Rajouri district and beheaded him, a police officer said. They also killed his 22-year- old son and 15-year-old daughter, the officer said. 'The militants thought he worked for security forces in the area,' he said. The village, in the rugged mountains of southern Jammu and Kashmir, is a five hour trek from the nearest road. Militants fighting Indian rule in Kashmir have in the past killed men and women they believe to be working for the Indian army, along with their families, to deter others.