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Thursday, 30 May, 2002, 14:36 GMT 15:36 UK
Kashmir militants attack Indian police
An Indian Army truck tows a howitzer towards the line of control
A million troops have been massed on the front line
Indian security forces have killed two suspected separatist militants involved in an attack on a police base in Indian-administered Kashmir.

The two entered the camp in the mountainous area of Doda - about 180 kilometres (110 miles) north-east of Jammu - killing three police officers, while other militants fired rockets from a hilltop nearby.

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The attack came as Indian and Pakistani forces exchanged artillery fire along the border overnight and early on Thursday - the Indians say one soldier died and the Pakistanis say at least seven of their civilians were killed.

Amid growing fears of an all-out war between the two countries, Pakistan says it has moved some troops from its frontier with Afghanistan to the border with India.

Tension between the two countries has been increasing since two weeks ago, when three men India says were Pakistani-based Islamic militants attacked an army camp in Kashmir killing 31 soldiers and their families.

Violence continues

Indian police say the two attackers were killed after being cornered in the base canteen.

Pakistani troops at the border
Kashmir conflict:
  • 1947 - India and Pakistan fight first war over disputed region
  • 1965 - India blames Pakistan for insurgency, war breaks out again
  • 1989 - Insurgency starts in Indian-administered Kashmir
  • 1999 - Heavy clashes around Kargil in Indian-administered Kashmir

  • It took police 15 hours to bring the situation under control. They say they held back from trying to capture or kill the attackers until daylight to minimise the risk of further police casualties.

    No group has admitted carrying out the attack, and Indian authorities have yet to identify the dead men.

    In the latest violence across the Line of Control (LoC) in Kashmir, seven Pakistanis were killed in the southern Rawalkot district.

    Pakistani authorities say their forces returned the fire killing several Indian soldiers. There has been no independent confirmation of this.

    Pakistan's President Pervez Musharraf has again warned that his armed forces will go on the offensive if attacked.

    He told Kashmir troops on Wednesday that the enemy should remember the battle could be taken back into their own territory.

    'Lie low'

    However, observers in Pakistan say it is widely believed the government has told militant groups to lie low for the time being and not to attempt to cross the LoC.

    The BBC's Susannah Price in Islamabad says it is thought the militants would find it difficult to go over in large groups if the Pakistani army wants to stop them.

    However, the main problem for the Pakistani Government now is that some are already inside Indian-administered Kashmir and could still carry out attacks.

    The BBC's Altaf Hussain reports from Srinagar
    "This the latest in a series of such attacks"
    Click here fror background reports and analysis

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    See also:

    30 May 02 | South Asia
    29 May 02 | South Asia
    28 May 02 | UK Politics
    29 May 02 | South Asia
    28 May 02 | South Asia
    27 May 02 | South Asia
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