Indian paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force's (CRPF) Quick Action Team conduct a security drill on the waters of Dal Lake ahead of the G20 meeting in Srinagar, the summer capital of Indian Kashmir, 20 May 2023. EFE-EPA/FILE/FAROOQ KHAN

Indian soldiers kill 6 militants in Kashmir

Srinagar, India, July 18 (EFE).- At least six suspected rebels have died in separate gunfights over the past day with Indian security forces, authorities said on Tuesday, in the latest violence flare-up in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir.

Four militants were killed Tuesday morning in a prolonged gunfight in the southern Poonch district bordering Pakistan.

A police officer in Poonch told EFE that security forces began a search operation on Monday evening in the mountainous Surankote area following inputs about the presence of a group of militants.

“Four militants were killed during an exchange of fire that continued through the night,” the officer added.

The identity of the slain rebels was not ascertained.

The officer said that four AK assault rifles, two pistols, and other arms and ammo were recovered from the shootout site.

Two more suspected rebels, who had allegedly infiltrated from across the de facto border with Pakistan, were killed in a gun battle with Indian soldiers, according to police.

Police claimed that Indian troops foiled an infiltration bid from across the Line of Control (LoC), the de facto border that divides Kashmir between the two neighbors, in the Krishna Ghati sector of the Poonch district on Monday.

The Indian army tightened security in border districts with Pakistan after 10 soldiers were killed in two suspected rebel attacks in earlier this year.

Kashmiri armed rebels, who India says are sponsored by Pakistan, have been fighting for more than three decades for the region’s independence or its annexation to Pakistan.

According to human rights organizations, more than 75,000 people, mostly civilians, have died due to the conflict raging since 1989.

Pakistan has disputed the Indian sovereignty over Kashmir since the partition of the Indian subcontinent in 1947. EFE