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Police: Kashmir rebel attack kills Indian soldier

September 23, 2013

SRINAGAR, India (AP) — Suspected separatist rebels killed an Indian paramilitary soldier and seriously wounded another Monday at a market in Kashmir’s main city, while a separate gun battle left a suspected militant dead at the de facto border between the India-controlled and Pakistan-held sides of the disputed Himalayan territory, officials said.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the market attack in Srinagar, in which at least two gunmen fired from close range at the soldiers as they were shopping, Inspector General Abdul Gani Mir said. One soldier died on the spot, while the other was rushed to a hospital.

About 225 kilometers (140 miles) to the northwest in the Kupwara region, Indian soldiers killed a suspected militant who they said had fired on them after crossing the highly militarized Line of Control dividing Kashmir between India and Pakistan, according to an Indian army officer who spoke on customary condition of anonymity.

Troops recovered an automatic rifle from the slain militant, who had been alone, the officer said. There was no independent confirmation of the incident.

Both India and Pakistan claim Kashmir in its entirety, even as anti-India sentiments run deep in parts of the territory where rebel groups have been fighting Indian rule since 1989. More than 68,000 people have been killed in the conflict, though resistance is now mainly shown through street protests.

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