Nine killed as militants storm Kashmir army camp


BANGTI (India): Two heavily armed militants hurling grenades stormed an army camp in Indian-controlled Kashmir yesterday, killing seven soldiers before being shot dead, police said. 

The dawn suicide raid came just hours after suspected rebels killed six people and wounded 46 on Monday night in an attack on pilgrims setting out for the Vaishno Devi shrine, one of the holiest Hindu sites in Muslim majority Jammu and Kashmir. 

One of the dead soldiers was a Hindu priest and his body was found near a small temple inside the camp, an army officer said. 

The latest violence in Kashmir, the heart of half a century of wars and tension between nuclear rivals India and Pakistan, appeared unlikely to derail slow but steady efforts to improve relations. 

India's parliament – quick to blame Pakistan in the past – condemned the bloodshed but counselled restraint. 

The main separatist alliance in Pakistani Kashmir condemned Monday's attack as “sheer terrorism”. 

None of the groups fighting Indian rule in Kashmir for 13 years have claimed responsibility for either Monday's attack or yesterday's raid on the army camp about 30km north-west of Jammu, the winter capital. 

In Pakistani Kashmir, the United Jihad Council, the main separatist alliance, condemned the violence against the pilgrims. – Reuters  

India

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