4 Indian soldiers, 3 militants killed in Kashmir gunfight

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Nov. 8 (UPI) — Four Indian army soldiers and three militants were killed in fighting that erupted Sunday in Kashmir, a military official said, marking the bloodiest exchange in the region in months.

India’s defense spokesman Col. Rajesh Kalia said the fighting erupted after a patrol noticed suspicious movement near the disputed Kashmir Line of Control with Pakistan at around 1 a.m., resulting in both sides exchanging fire.

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The firefight lasted until about 4 a.m., during which a militant and an Indian soldier were killed, Kalia said in a statement, adding that reinforcements were then deployed to the area and “terrorist movement was tracked with surveillance devices.”

The Indian security forces next located the militants near the LoC at around 10:20 a.m., leading to a second gunfight during which two militants were killed as well as two Indian soldiers and an army officer, he said.

At least two other Indian soldiers were injured, Kalia said, adding that they have been evacuated from the scene and that the operation was still ongoing.

The gunfight is responsible for the largest death toll for the region since early April when five militants and five soldiers were killed.