Shopian encounter: 10 including five militants killed in Jammu and Kashmir

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Senior Superintendent of Jammu and Kashmir Police (SSP) of Shopian district, Shailendra Mishra said that the militants were asked to surrender via public announcement before moving on with the clash but haven't received any response.

Hundreds of villagers threw rocks at Indian troops in a bid to help rebels who were trapped in a house in southern Shopian area, police said. Counterinsurgency officers and soldiers cordoned off the village following intelligence that a group of militants were hiding there, police said. One of them was Adil Ahmad, who succumbed to injuries at the Kulgam district hospital.

Since a year ago gun battles between government forces and militants seeking an end to Indian rule in Kashmir have become more frequent, in a region divided between India and Pakistan but claimed in full by both.

A police spokesman said the circumstances surrounding the death of civilians was being investigated.

The picture of 10 Hizbul Mujahideen militants at an apple orchard had created a stir in the valley as they were touted by insurgent groups as Kashmirs new boys who had taken up arms.

A curfew was ordered in the capital on Sunday and mobile internet services were shut down in much of the Indian-administered region. Missing for over 36 hours, this would-be militant was among the five killed in Shopian in an encounter.

The clashes erupted after five terrorists, including Hizbul commander Saddam Paddar, Kashmir University assistant professor Muhammad Rafi Bhat, Tawseef Sheikh, Molvi Bilal and Adil Ahmad, were killed in the Shopian gunfight.

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Three militants were killed and four security personnel were injured in an encounter in Chattabal area of Srinagar city yesterday (May 05).

Government forces opened fire to break up the protests, director general of police Shesh Paul Vaid said.

A couple of Kashmiri students, including those pursuing engineering course and post-graduation, had in the recent past joined terrorist ranks, but it was for the first instance of a university teacher picking up the gun.

Over a dozen protesters have been injured during clashes near the encounter site.

Extending full support to the "peoples agitation" led by the Hurriyat, the largest trade body on Sunday said that it was willing to sacrifice the business losses but that the atrocities, which have evolved into "worst ever humanitarian crises unleashed by the government forces" was intolerable. "The silence of world community over the atrocities is not just criminal but also legitimizes this violence".

Asserting that political matters need political intervention, she said issues in Jammu and Kashmir can be resolved only through a sustained dialogue between all stakeholders.

On the other hand, India accuses Pakistan of arming and training the rebels, a charge Pakistan denies.

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