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Two Indian soldiers, one suspected rebel killed in ambush in India-held Kashmir

SRINAGAR: Two Indian paramilitary soldiers and one suspected rebel were killed in India-held Kashmir Wednesday after a convoy of paramilitary troops was ambushed in the troubled region, police said.

Police Director-General K. Rajendra said at least eight soldiers were also wounded in the attack.

Another senior police officer Danish Rana said militants hid in maize fields and sprayed bullets at a Border Security Force convoy near Udhampur, a garrison town on the main highway connecting the disputed territory with the rest of India.

Police said the gunbattle was ongoing and that no other details were immediately available.

Violence in the region has escalated in recent weeks, with regular skirmishes between Indian and Pakistani troops stationed along the heavily militarised frontier.

 

At least four civilians were killed on Tuesday as the government forces on the two sides traded gunfire and mortar shells.

Muslim-majority Kashmir is divided and administered separately by India and Pakistan but claimed in full by both.

The two countries have fought three wars since independence from Britain in 1947, two of them over Kashmir.

A 2003 cease-fire largely has held despite small, but regular, skirmishes.

Rebel groups have been fighting Indian rule in Kashmir since 1989. More than 68,000 people have been killed in the fighting and in a subsequent Indian military crackdown.

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