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India forces kill two suspected militants in Kashmir

New Delhi’s forces have killed a couple of suspected militants after storming their hideout in Indian-administered Kashmir, an army spokesman says.

Early on Friday, Indian police and army soldiers began an operation in the Peethawada area, located about 70 kilometers northwest of Srinagar, the main city of India’s Jammu and Kashmir State.

The raid came after the army received a tip-off that a number of militants were hiding in a village in the region.

“Two terrorists were killed in the operation,” army spokesman Colonel N N Joshi said.

In a similar incident last month, nine people, including three Indian soldiers, were killed in a three-day gun battle in Kashmir. The standoff erupted after militants attacked a military convoy before storming a government-run training facility in the disputed region.

Kashmir lies at the heart of a bitter territorial dispute since India and Pakistan became independent in 1947. Cross-border frictions have recently flared up between troops from the two neighbors along the disputed de facto border in Kashmir. The two sides have accused each other of provocation.

New Delhi and Islamabad both claim the region in full, but rule parts of it. The two countries have fought two wars over the disputed region.

India and Pakistan agreed to a ceasefire in Kashmir on November 26, 2003, and launched a peace process the following year. Since then, there have been sporadic clashes, with the two sides trading accusations of violating the ceasefire along their de facto border dividing the disputed region.

Thousands of people have been killed in the unrest in Kashmir over the past two decades.

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