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Strike, security restrictions close Indian Kashmir

July 13, 2013

SRINAGAR, India (AP) — Businesses were closed and troops patrolled the streets in Indian Kashmir on Saturday as separatists rejecting Indian rule called a strike on an annual holiday marking the anniversary of a bloody 1931 uprising.

Martyrs’ Day marks the day when 21 Kashmiri Muslims were ordered killed by the army of the state’s Hindu king to quell their revolt.

On Saturday, police and paramilitary soldiers laid razor wire across roads in the old quarters of Srinagar, the main city in Indian Kashmir, and warned residents to stay indoors, according to local resident Bashir Ahmed.

Traditionally, both separatists and pro-India Kashmiri groups commemorate the day, but key separatist leaders were under house arrest to stop them from leading rallies.

Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan. About 68,000 people have died in over two decades of conflict.

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