Indian forces kill 7 militants in Kashmir fighting

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Curbs imposed on media coverage of IIOJK gunbattles


Srinagar

Seven suspected militants were killed and four soldiers wounded in two separate gunfights in Indian-controlled Kashmir, officials said Friday, triggering anti-India protests and clashes in the disputed region.

Militants hid inside a mosque as government forcers cordoned off a neighborhood in southern Shopian town on Thursday, police said.

The gunmen refused to surrender, triggering a fight that ended on Friday, police said.

Lt. Col. Emron Musavi, an Indian army spokesman, said five militants were killed while three soldiers and an army officer were wounded.

As the fighting raged, Shopian residents on both days marched near the clash site in solidarity with the rebels and chanting slogans seeking an end of Indian rule.

Government forces fired shotgun pellets and tear gas at the stone-throwing protesters.
There were no reports of any casualties.

Separately in southern Tral area, government forces killed two rebels in a brief battle on Friday, Musavi said. He said troops recovered seven rifles and two pistols.

Meanwhile, Police in occupied Kashmir have asked journalists to refrain from live coverage of gun battles with fighters opposing Indian rule in the region or protests, calling such reports a provocation amounting to interference in their duties.

In an order this week, the police chief in the occupied Kashmir Valley set out new guidelines for journalists covering the insurgency, in which fighters have targeted security forces.

“No operational content should be carried which is likely to incite violence or contains anything against maintenance of law and order, or which promotes anti-national sentiment,” police chief Vijay Kumar said.—AP/Reuters

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