Two suspected rebels were killed in a shootout in Indian Kashmir

Two suspected rebels were killed in a shootout in Indian Kashmir

Two suspected rebels were killed in an exchange of fire with security forces in Indian-controlled Kashmir, police said on Friday, as general elections were held in the country.

• Read also: Kashmir: Eight suspected rebels were shot dead, according to India

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The shooting broke out on Thursday evening in the northern town of Sopore when police and army cordoned off the area after being informed of the presence of armed rebels.

A police officer, who preferred to remain anonymous because he was not authorized to speak to the press, told AFP that the bodies of the two men were found at the scene of the confrontation.

The officer added that two soldiers and a civilian were also injured by bullets.

Police said Thursday's incident came two days after a clash between soldiers and an unspecified number of suspected insurgents in the Bandipur forest area.

Two soldiers were injured, according to local press.

These clashes occurred during the Indian general elections, which continue until June.

Earlier this month, a rebel was killed in a clash with soldiers in the southern Kashmir valley.

Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan, which have claimed sovereignty over the entire Himalayan territory since their independence in 1947. It was the cause of the outbreak of two of the three wars between them since then.

The part under Indian administration has witnessed more than three decades of unrest, which has left tens of thousands of civilians, soldiers and rebels dead.

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New Delhi accuses Pakistan of supporting separatists, a claim refuted by Islamabad.

Rebel groups have been waging an insurgency in the Indian-controlled part of Kashmir since 1989, demanding either independence or merger with Pakistan.

Since the semi-autonomous status of Indian Kashmir was revoked in 2019, the separatist insurgency has been largely crushed, although young people continue to join it.

More than half a million Indian soldiers are deployed in the region.

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About the Author: Hermínio Guimarães

"Introvertido premiado. Viciado em mídia social sutilmente charmoso. Praticante de zumbis. Aficionado por música irritantemente humilde."

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