3 Militants, Soldier Killed In 2 Separate Encounters In North Kashmir

Kupwara—In a surge in fighting between government forces and militants, at least three militants and an army commando were killed Tuesday in two separate gunbattles in the North Kashmir’s Kupwara district, police said.

Fighting erupted in the north-western area of Handwara after troops launched a counterinsurgency operation and killed three militants there, said IGP Kashmir, Muneer Ahmed Khan.

In another operation in the neighbouring Kupwara area, a special forces soldier was killed in a continuing gun battle, police said.

Khan said government forces were battling a few militants trapped in the area.

Giving details Khan said government forces killed three militants belonging to militant outfit Lashkar-e-Toiba in Magam Handwara area of North Kashmir’s Kupwara district.

After receiving specific information about the presence of the militants in Kharmohalla, a joint operation was launched by the CRPF, police and the army.

“We started operations at midnight on specific information of terrorists hiding,” IGP Kashmir Munir Khan told media.

“Militants, who were hiding in a house, were asked to surrender but they kept firing. Three Pakistani LeT militants were killed, and arms and ammunition recovered.”

Following the encounter, DGP J&K Police SP Vaid congratulated the security forces on Twitter.

Meanwhile, a para-military commando was killed Tuesday after a gunfight broke out between militants and security forces in the forests of Gujjarpati Zirhama in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kupwara district. At least three security officers were injured in the encounter.

Police sources said that after the inputs about the presence of militants in forest area forces cordoned off Gujarpati and Zirhama areas.

A joint team of the 23 Para commandos, the Special Operation Group of the state police and the CRPF have cordoned off the Gujjarpati Zirhama forests.

Security forces launched a search operation after receiving inputs about the presence of militants in the area.

The militants reportedly opened fire upon the search party, triggering an encounter.

A police official said that combined forces including Army’s 23 Para commandos, 160 TA, SOG and CRPF engaged the militants and a vast forest area has been sealed and search operation is going on.

On Saturday, security forces killed six militants in an encounter in the Hajin area of Bandipora district. One Indian Air Force Garud commando was also killed in the encounter, and two Army personnel were injured.

On Sunday, the Army had said that in 2017, it had killed 125 to 130 militants in the “hinterland” of the Kashmir Valley and 190 militants in the whole of Jammu and Kashmir.

Meanwhile, shopkeepers lowered their shops while transport disappeared on the road after dozens of youth amid pro freedom slogans hit to roads in Parimpora area of Srinagar city and pelted stones on deployed Forces personnel.

Pertinently, a Mugees Ahmed Mir, a militant from the area was killed on Friday evening in a gun fight at Zakura area in the outskirts of Srinagar city. A police officer Muhammad Imaran Tak of Udhampur was also killed in the gun fight.

Parimpora locality had witnessed shutdown for the last three consecutive days.

In Bandipore district, soldiers resorted to aerial firing after they were attacked with stones in Chandergeer and Sadarkot Bala and at both places they dispersed the protesters by resorting to aerial firing.

At least six Lashkar-e-Taiba militants were killed in a gun fight In Chandergeer area on Saturday.

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