3 Militants Killed In Sopore Encounter

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Army men near gunfight site – KO File Photo: Abid Bhat

Srinagar- Three Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) militans were killed in an encounter in Rebban area of north Kashmir’s Sopore on Sunday, police said.

State forces launched a cordon and search operation around midnight in the Rebban area of Sopore town following information about the presence of militants there, a police official said.

He said the search operation turned into an encounter around 4 am when the hiding militants opened fire at the state forces.

The forces retaliated and in the ensuing gunfight, three militants were killed, the official said.

Two of the slain militants have been identified as Abu Rafia alias Usman and Saifullah — both residents of Pakistan, they said.

Rafia was active in the valley since 2016. He and Saifullah were involved in many militancy-related incidents, including the July 1 attack in Sopore in which a CRPF jawan and a civilian were killed, they added.

The identity of the third militant has not yet been ascertained, the police said.

Arms and ammunition, including three AK-47 rifles, and other incriminating materials were recovered from the encounter site, they said.

2 militants arrested for hurling grenades 

Two militants were arrested within hours of them hurling grenades on state forces in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Sunday, police said.

The grenades, however, did not explode, a police spokesman said.

“Today about 16:10 hours, militants lobbed two grenades on the security forces’ deployment near Sail Charsoo on a national highway. The grenades however did not explode, he said.

The spokesman said that a bomb disposal squad was called in and both the grenades were picked up safely by it after following a security drill.

A case was registered and investigation was taken up, he said, adding that during the course of the probe, it came to fore that two persons riding a white colour motorcycle had lobbed grenades and were driving very fast.

The area was cordoned off immediately and during a search at Sail village, the suspected white colour bike was traced at about 100 meters away from the place of the incident, the spokesman said.

He said during further search of the area, both the militants were arrested.

They have been identified as Umer and Zahid Yusuf Pala, both residents of Aloora area of the neighbouring Shopian district.

The spokesman said the militants were arrested within four hours of the incident and further investigation and their questioning is going on.

 

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