Two militants, Indian soldier killed in Kashmir gunfight


Boniyar area clash leaves another soldier wounded

SRINAGAR, Indian-held Kashmir – Two suspected militants and a soldier of the Indian army were killed and another soldier wounded in a gun battle in Boniyar area in northern Indian-held Kashmir’s (IHK) Baramulla district.

The Indian army said Saturday that the gunfight lasted for around 48 hours near the Line of Control (LoC) that divides IHK between India and Pakistan.

“The encounter began in the intervening night of July 2 and 3. One soldier of the army and two militants have been killed in the gun battle. We expect the bodies of the slain militants to be handed over to us at around midnight today,” Station House Officer (SHO) at the Boniyar Police Station, Tariq Ahmad, told Anadolu Agency on Saturday.

The Indian army also said that while one of their men was killed, another was wounded in the skirmish. 

Indian army officials said that they had information about the presence of militants in the forest area in Boniyar and their forces came into contact with the militants, which resulted in an extended gunfight.

While the army said that they have retrieved the bodies of the militants, their identities are yet to be ascertained.

The Indian army also said that they had recovered three AK-47 and three rucksacks from the site of the operation.

Kashmir, a Muslim-majority Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in full.

The two countries have fought three wars — in 1948, 1965 and 1971 — since they were partitioned in 1947, two of which were fought over Kashmir.

Since 1989, Kashmiri resistance groups in IHK have been fighting against Indian rule for independence or for unification with neighboring Pakistan. More than 70,000 Kashmiris have been killed so far in the violence, most of them by Indian forces. India maintains over half a million soldiers in IHK.

A part of Kashmir is also held by China.