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3 suspected militants, Indian commando killed during gun fights in held Kashmir

3 suspected militants, Indian commando killed during gun fights in held Kashmir

At least three suspected militants and an army commando were killed on Tuesday in two separate clashes in the India-held Kashmir following a surge in fighting between government forces and separatists, police said.

Fighting erupted in the northwestern area of Handwara after Indian troops launched a counter-insurgency operation and killed three militants there, said Muneer Ahmed Khan, a senior police officer.

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




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

There was no independent confirmation of the two clashes, the latest in a string of deadly shootouts between Indian forces and militants in the restive Kashmir. At least eight separatists, an Indian air force commando and a policeman have been killed in the last two days.

Moreover, at least 190 rebels and 70 government soldiers have been killed in fighting this year.

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Anti-India sentiment runs deep in the region, and most people support the separatists' cause while also participating in civilian street protests against Indian control.

India accuses Pakistan of arming and training the militants, a claim which Pakistan denies.

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