Saturday, June 2, 2001, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

7 Afghan guerrillas shot in Rajouri
M.L. Kak
Tribune News Service

Jammu, June 1
Troops and the police achieved a major success in their anti-insurgency operations today when seven militants, all Afghan mercenaries, were killed at Loren Mandi in the border district of Rajouri.

According to the Army authorities, all seven guerrillas had crossed into the Indian territory during the early hours of this morning. On receipt of information about the infiltration, the Army and the police launched a joint operation. As the forces neared the hideout, they came under fire. The troops retaliated, killing all seven intruders on the spot.

A large quantity of arms and ammunition was recovered from the slain militants.

The Army said during the past one week more than 25 dreaded militants had been eliminated in Poonch and Rajouri districts where “Operation Flushout” was in progress. They said more than 225 rebels had been eliminated in the twin border districts during the past over five months.

The security forces have been directed to carry out round-the-clock patrolling. A vital bridge was saved from being blown up by the militants yesterday who had planted 15 kg of IED. The IED was defused on time.

Another militant was killed by the security forces in Sangyot area in Poonch district last night, add agencies. The militant, identified as Abu Asif of the Lashker-e-Toiba, belonged to occupied Kashmir.

A pistol with two magazines, two hand grenades and a huge quantity of explosives and ‘incriminating’ material were recovered from him.

Two jawans were killed in an encounter with militants in Surankote area of Poonch district.

Elsewhere, three foreign mercenaries were killed in an encounter with a joint search party of the Special Operations Group (SOG) in Rangwar forest in Kupwara yesterday.

A BSF jawan was killed when militants opened fire at a search party in Bandipora area of Baramula district late last night.

An Army Major was injured when militants triggered an improvised explosive device near Madana Julla bridge in Surankote. Troops detected two militant hideouts in Border forest in Anantnag district and Boripatheri forest in Kupwara, and recovered 15 kg of RDX along with six hand grenades early today.

The SOG, Bandipora, and the BSF busted two militant hideouts during search operations in Chichinarg forest in Baramula and Milyal forest in Kupwara during separate operations and recovered a huge cache of arms and ammunition.

Security men recovered two rocket launchers, two mortars with six shells, three assault rifles, a Pika gun, 6 kg of explosives, 29 grenades and a box containing over 750 rounds of ammunition from the hideout.

The security forces across the Kashmir valley have resumed search operations to nab militants and their sympathisers. They have resumed search of houses and vehicles and frisking of passengers.

A report from Baramula in north Kashmir said the security forces had cordoned off Vernar, Kursoo, Kupwara, Sogam, Saderkote, Gulgam, Kralpora, Sathra, Watergam and Hari.

These villages had been sealed and house-to-house searches launched since early this morning. Reports said all incoming and outgoing vehicles were being searched at different places and men, women and youths frisked by the security forces.

Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee announced a unilateral ceasefire on the eve of the holy month of Ramzan from November 28. The ceasefire was later extended till May 31.

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