Official killed in Kashmir attack

Suspected separatists in Indian-administered Kashmir have shot and killed a civil administrator, his two bodyguards and a policeman, according to army and police officials.

    More than 66,000 people have died in the 15-year conflict

    Mian Ramzan, the head of Pattan municipality, was shot and killed by four masked assailants inside a shop, police officer Junaid Ahmad said on Tuesday.

    In another incident, at least six separatists were killed in an overnight gun battle with soldiers, officials said.

    Ramzan was elected in February's municipal elections, which were opposed by separatist groups, who have been fighting Indian forces since 1989, seeking independence for Kashmir or its merger with neighbouring Pakistan.

    Ahmad said two of Ramzan's bodyguards and a policeman were also killed when they tried to chase the killers.

    Pattan is about 330km south of Jammu, the winter capital of Jammu and Kashmir state. No one claimed responsibility for Ramzan's assassination.

    Gun battle

    In Poonch district, overnight fighting took place after soldiers on patrol saw armed men crossing the Line of Control that divides the Kashmir region between India and Pakistan, Lieutenant-Colonel D K Badola, an army spokesman in Jammu, said.

    In an hour-long gun battle that followed, at least six of the infiltrators were killed, Badola said.

    India accuses Pakistan of arming and funding separatists, who cross over into India to carry out attacks in Kashmir and elsewhere.

    Pakistan denies the charges, saying it only offers them diplomatic and moral support.

    More than 66,000 people, mostly civilians, have died in the 15-year conflict.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How different voting systems work around the world

    How different voting systems work around the world

    Nearly two billion voters in 52 countries around the world will head to the polls this year to elect their leaders.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    How the art world's hunger for ancient artefacts is destroying a centuries-old culture. A journey across the Himalayas.