Indian forces kill 3 in Jammu Kashmir

Scores of protesters injured in southern Kashmir
SRINAGAR, Jammu and Kashmir: Two militants and a civilian were killed by Indian forces in the Shopian district of southern Kashmir on Wednesday.
Lt. Col. Rajesh Kalia, Indian Army spokesman, confirmed to Anadolu Agency that their forces had shot dead two militants in the village of Kundallan in Shopian.
Eyewitnesses told Anadolu Agency that hundreds of young people from nearby villages took to the streets shouting pro-independence slogans and pelting the Indian forces with stones.
“The Indian forces opened fire at the protestors and scores were wounded,” Zubair Bhat, a resident of a neighboring village, told Anadolu Agency.
Dr. Rashid Ahmad, Shopian’s chief medical officer, told reporters that 120 people had been injured in the gunfight.
According to doctors at a local hospital, at least seven people brought in for treatment had bullet injuries.
Police in a statement said the two slain militants belonged to the Jaish-e-Muhammad militant outfit.
“The killed militants were identified as Sameer Ahmad Sheikh, a local, and Babar from Pakistan,” police said.
“Some civilians were also injured in crossfire at the site of the gun battle and were later evacuated to the hospital for medical attention. One of the injured later succumbed to his injuries while the others are stated to be stable now,” the statement added.
Responding to the violence, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, a pro-independence leader chair of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference, later posted on Twitter: “Kashmir turned into a graveyard of its own people by Indian forces as 3 more civilians die today and more than 50 injured!”
He named two young people as being shot at, with one having died of his wounds.
Kashmir, a Muslim-majority Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in full. A small sliver of Kashmir is also held by China.
Since they were partitioned in 1947, the two countries have fought three wars — in 1948, 1965 and 1971 — two of them over Kashmir.
Also, in Siachen glacier in northern Kashmir, Indian and Pakistani troops have fought intermittently since 1984. A cease-fire came into effect in 2003.
Some Kashmiri groups in Jammu and Kashmir have been fighting against Indian rule for independence, or for unification with neighboring Pakistan.
According to several human rights organizations, thousands of people have reportedly been killed in the conflict in the region since 1989.–AA

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