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Indian Kashmir rocked by 'militant attacks'

India has thousands of troops ranged along the Kashmir Line of Control
India has thousands of troops ranged along the Kashmir Line of Control  


SRINAGAR, Kashmir (CNN) -- Authorities in Indian controlled Kashmir say at least two members of India's security forces and two militants have been killed in a fierce gun battle.

The clash took place Saturday in the village of Sofshalli Kokernag village in the south of India's Jammu and Kashmir state.

The exchange followed a grenade attack near the city of Srinagar Friday in which more than a dozen people, mainly civilians, were wounded.

Authorities say they suspect separatist Muslim militants -- whom India says are backed by Pakistan -- were behind the attack.

Earlier that same day police say eight civilians and six members of the paramilitary forces were injured in a militant grenade attack near the southern town of Kakpora.

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Earlier this week India's new defense minister cited evidence that infiltration from Pakistani-administered Kashmir had increased recently.

Yaswant Sinha said the number of incursions was on the rise again despite Pakistani pledges aimed at cooling tensions between the two nuclear-armed rivals.

New Delhi accuses Pakistan of providing funding and training to militants it accuses of carrying out a series of attacks against Indian targets, including a daring raid on the Indian parliament last December.

Pakistan denies the Indian charges saying that it only gives moral support to groups fighting what it calls a "freedom struggle" in the disputed Muslim majority region of Kashmir.

The row sparked a tense military stand-off between the two countries, who between them massed around a million troops along their shared border and the so-called Line of Control that divides Kashmir between them.

Prior to Musharraf's statement in May, diplomats feared the dispute could erupt into a potentially devastating war involving the use of nuclear weapons.

In the subsequent weeks however tensions have cooled markedly following a flurry of international diplomatic visits, although the regular exchanges of fire between Indian and Pakistani troops across the Line of Control have continued.



 
 
 
 







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