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10 Die in Overnight Village Raid

April 9, 2002

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JAMMU, India (AP) _ An overnight raid on a village and a bombing in a market killed 10 people and wounded 17 in attacks blamed on Islamic militants in India’s Jammu-Kashmir state, police said Monday.

The bomb killed three and wounded 12 when it went off at a restaurant in a crowded market in Rajouri town, 110 miles northwest of Jammu, the winter capital of the north Indian state of Jammu-Kashmir, police said.

The blast came hours after a Sunday night attack on a remote village that killed seven people, including a 6-year old girl and her mother. Five others were wounded in the attack in the Hindu village of Arnas, about 80 miles north of Jammu, where suspected Islamic militants burned down nearly two dozen homes, police said.

Islamic militants have been fighting for Kashmir’s independence or merger with Pakistan since 1989. The Indian government says 30,000 people have died in the insurgency, though human rights groups put the number at 60,000, mostly Muslim dead.

India accuses Pakistan of aiding the militants. Islamabad supports their cause but denies providing material help to the groups, which are based inside Pakistan or the portion of Kashmir that it controls.

The nuclear-armed neighbors have put their armies on a war alert since a Dec. 13 attack on India’s Parliament, which New Delhi blamed on two Pakistan-based groups fighting for Kashmir’s independence. They have fought two wars over Kashmir since gain independence from Britain in 1947.

India controls about two-thirds of the disputed region.

Update hourly