3 LeT militants killed in Kupwara encounter

3 LeT militants killed in Kupwara encounter

Three militants, believed to be Pakistanis, were killed while a policeman was injured, in an encounter between security forces and ultras in north Kashmir’s Kupwara district on Wednesday.

A minor girl was also killed while her brother, also a minor, was injured when “stray bullets” hit them near the encounter site, police said.

Sources said a joint team of the army’s 41-Rashtriya Rifles, 98 Bn CRPF and Special Operations Group of J&K police launched the operation in Hyhama, Kundinad village in Kalaroos area of Kupwara, 100 km from here, in the wee hours of Wednesday.

“As the search was on, the militants in hiding opened fire on the security forces at around 6.30 am, triggering an encounter which lasted for several hours in which three ultras were killed while one policeman was injured,” they said.

While the police said that identity of the slain militants was being ascertained, sources said they were all Pakistanis affiliated with Lashker-e-Toiba outfit.

Police said three AK series rifles and ammunition were recovered from the encounter site.
The slain girl has been identified as Kaneeza (7) and the injured boy is Faisal (9).

Inspector General of Police, Kashmir Syed Javid Gilani, confirming the killing of the militants and that Kaneeza and Faisal were hit by stray bullets near the encounter site.

The killing of Kaneeza is the third civilian casualty since army chief General Bipin Rawat warned people to stay away from encounter sites. He had warned that those involved in pelting stones during gun battles with militants would be dealt with ‘harshly’.

Stone pelting at the encounter sites has emerged as a major problem for security forces in Kashmir in the recent months.

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