Tribune News Service
Srinagar, March 3
Two unidentified militants were killed in an operation in north Kashmir’s frontier Kupwara district, the Army said.
With the killing of two militants, the death toll in the operation that began on Friday morning at village Babagund Langate in Handwara reached to seven, which included five security men.
One of them is suspected to be a Pakistani militant, belonging to Lashkar-e-Toiba.
A CRPF trooper, who was among six forces men injured in the gunfight on Friday, succumbed to injuries on Sunday morning.
“Two terrorists have been killed,” Srinagar-based defence spokesman Col Rajesh Kalia said.
Bodies of both the militants have been recovered from the encounter site and their identities and affiliations are being ascertained.
The operation in congested Babagund was launched on Thursday night and the first contact with militants was established at 1 am.
In the first four hours of the gunfight, the security forces believed that they were able to eliminate militants who were hiding in a house. However, on Friday afternoon, when the joint team of forces started combing the debris, a militant hiding in a nearby area opened indiscriminate fire leading to the killing of two policemen and two CRPF men, including an officer.
Six other security men, including a CRPF Commandant, were also injured in the gunfight.
A civilian was also killed in clashes near the encounter site on Friday.
After the reverses, the forces carried out the operation cautiously to avoid casualties. Special forces were also inducted to flush out the holed-up militants who were shifting from one area to another within the cordoned village.
“We were going cautiously after suffering casualties on Friday,” a police officer said.
On Saturday, a brief contact with militants was established. Locals said at least four houses were blasted during the operation.
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