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Agencies
October 22, 2018
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Indian troops martyr 14 Kashmiris in IHK

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Agencies
October 22, 2018

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HELD SRINAGAR: Violence across the Indian Held Kashmir (IHK) left at least 14 people martyred on Sunday, police and military officials said, when an explosion detonated in a crowd protesting against the Indian rule.

Thousands of demonstrators, some hurling stones, marched on a village in southern Kulgam town where Indian government forces were battling an unknown number of armed fighters.

Three Mujahideen were shot dead in the exchange but a subsequent explosion at the scene killed five demonstrators, said Inspector-General of Police Swayam Prakash Pani. "Protestors ignored warnings and soon overwhelmed the site, where five died after being hit when leftover explosives went off," he said. A sixth civilian injured in the explosion later died in a hospital in Srinagar.

At least 30 others were wounded in clashes with police, some seriously. Mobile telephone services were suspended in the area as protests spread, including to Srinagar where police used tear gas to disperse angry crowds.

Elsewhere, fighting near the border dividing the contested Himalayan region between India and Pakistan also left three soldiers and five unknown fighters dead. The troops died in "a fierce encounter with heavily armed fighters", said Indian defence spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Devender Anand.

India has some 500,000 troops deployed in held Kashmir. Indian troops, in another act of state terrorism on Sunday, martyred two more youth in the Rajouri area of Jammu region. According KMS, the Indian troops martyred the youth in Sunderbani area of the district. Three Indian soldiers were also killed in an attack in the same area.

Indian troops in their fresh act of state terrorism martyred 11 youth and injured more than 50 in Laroo area of Kulgam district on Sunday. According to Kashmir Media Service (KMS), three were martyred when the troops blasted a house. The rest were killed in troops’ firing and in an explosion while people were removing the debris of the blasted house.

The incident followed a cordon and search operation, jointly launched by Indian Army’s Rashtriya Rifle, Central Reserve Police Force and Special Operation Group in the district. The troops used bullets, pellets and teargas shells against the protesting youth.

Doctors at Kulgam and Islamabad district hospitals said that they had received 44 injured youth. Some critically injured were shifted to hospitals in Srinagar. Four Indian soldiers were injured in two separate attacks in Kulgam and Pulwama.

Meanwhile, the Joint Resistance Leadership comprising Syed Ali Gilani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik has strongly denounced the killing of a pregnant woman by Indian troops in Shadimarg area of Pulwama district. The woman identified as Firdousa Akhtar, wife of Khursheed Ahmed Sheikh, was martyred when the troops resorted to indiscriminate firing.

An army camp was attacked by a grenade in the same area. Syed Ali Gilani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Muhammad Yasin Malik in a joint statement issued in Srinagar said that India was resorting to the worst kind of brutalities to prolong its illegal hold on Jammu and Kashmir and suppress the Kashmiris’ just liberation struggle.

They appealed to the world community to come forward in a big way and help the Kashmiris in achieving their inalienable right to self-determination. Indian troops and police personnel thrashed and arrested three journalists without any reason in Nawab Bazar area of Srinagar. The three journalists working with a local news portal were standing outside their office when the forces’ personnel thrashed them severely and took them away in a vehicle. A few days ago, journalists were harassed and stopped from performing their professional duties by the troops in Fateh Kadal area of the city.

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