Curfew in Indian Kashmir after militant attack

| Zoom

SRINAGAR, India (AP) - A strict curfew was imposed in most of Indian-controlled Kashmir on Thursday, with thousands of troops fanning out across the region a day after a militant attack left five paramilitary soldiers dead.

The militant strike was the bloodiest in years in Srinagar, the region's main city.

The attack caused an uproar in India's Parliament on Thursday, as opposition lawmakers accused the government of not using intelligence reports to protect the soldiers.

Two militants staged Wednesday's attack, lobbying grenades and opening fire on a group of paramilitary soldiers, killing five troops. Soldiers shot dead both militants.

Later Wednesday, paramilitary soldiers fatally shot a civilian who they said was part of a group of protesters throwing stones at paramilitary vehicles. Local residents, however, said the man was not a protester.

Another civilian was killed when he was hit by a paramilitary vehicle. The paramilitary group, the Central Reserve Police Force, said that death was an accident and not related to the day's violence.

The civilian deaths spiraled into larger protests, leading to the imposition of the curfew. Thousands of armed government troops patrolled the streets of the curfew-bound towns Thursday.

No group has claimed responsibility for Wednesday's attack.

Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said the militants appeared to have come from neighbor and archrival Pakistan. The attackers were found to be carrying a diary that contained Pakistani phone numbers and a tube of skin ointment manufactured in the Pakistani city of Karachi, he told Parliament. Pakistan denied the charges.

Anti-India sentiment runs deep in the Himalayan region, which has been wracked by more than two decades of separatist violence. While militant attacks have sharply dropped in recent years, Indian Kashmir has faced weeks of protests since the hanging of Kashmiri militant Mohammed Afzal Guru for his role in a 2001 attack on India's Parliament that killed 14 people, including five of the gunmen. Most Kashmiris do not believe Guru received a fair trial.

The Himalayan region is divided between India and Pakistan, but claimed in its entirety by both. The insurgents are demanding either a separate state or a merger with Muslim-majority Pakistan.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Top Stories

  • Does This Make Sense?
    Jason Rantz questions Inslee's plan to fund transportation with carbon pollution tax

  • Easing Restrictions
    President Obama has announced the re-establishment of diplomatic relations with Cuba

  • Holiday Map
    Find holiday events, Santa photo opportunities, and light displays
ATTENTION COMMENTERS: We've changed our comments, but want to keep you in the conversation.
Please login below with your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Disqus account. Existing MyNorthwest account holders will need to create a new Disqus account or use one of the social logins provided below. Thank you.
comments powered by Disqus
Sign up for breaking news e-mail alerts from
In the community
Do you know an exceptional citizen who has impacted and inspired others?
KIRO Radio and WSECU would like to recognize six oustanding citizens this year. Nominate them to be recognized and to receive a $2,000 charitable grant.