Kashmiris protest over killing of boys

Thousands of Kashmiris have taken to the streets shouting anti-India slogans against the fatal shooting of four boys by the army.

    The conflict in Kashmir has killed about 66,000 people

    The demonstrators in Dodipora village in India-administered Kashmir on Thursday accused security forces of cordoning off a playground and firing indiscriminately during a hunt for a militant suspect. Dodipora is about 90km north of Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu-Kashmir state.

    Four boys aged from six to 18 died in the shooting on Wednesday, but the army denied its soldiers fired indiscriminately.

    Major-General N K Singh said the army cordoned off the area following a tip-off that some militants were there.

    As soon as the army laid the cordon, the militants hurled grenades at the soldiers, setting off a gunfight, Singh said. The four boys died in the crossfire, he said.

    Blame

    But Ghulam Haffan Wani, whose eight-year-old son died in the shooting, said there was no gunfight and that only the soldiers were firing.

    "Perhaps, they were trying to catch one of the boys suspecting him of having links to the militant groups," Wani said, adding that the firing started when one boy tried to run away.

    Both the Indian army and the state government promised to investigate the incident.

    India and neighbouring Pakistan control separate parts of Kashmir and have fought two wars over the divided region.

    More than a dozen separatist groups are fighting security forces in Indian-administered Kashmir seeking independence or its merger with mostly Muslim Pakistan. The 16-year insurgency has claimed more than 66,000 lives, most of them civilians.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    'We scoured for days without sleeping, just clothes on our backs'

    'We scoured for days without sleeping, just clothes on our backs'

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    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.

    Daughters of al-Shabab

    Daughters of al-Shabab

    What draws Kenyan women to join al-Shabab and what challenges are they facing when they return to their communities?