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Last Updated: Saturday, 30 July 2005, 13:37 GMT 14:37 UK
Soldiers kill Kashmir militants
TV Cameraman Muzaffar Ahmed was injured in the minutes after this picture was taken
TV Cameraman Muzaffar Ahmed was injured in the clash
Police and soldiers have killed two militants in Indian-administered Kashmir after storming two buildings in which they were hiding.

At least two soldiers were killed and several others injured in the intense gun battle which raged in the summer capital Srinagar for over 24 hours.

The injured included several civilians and journalists who were caught in the exchange in the heart of Srinagar.

Violence had ebbed in Kashmir after peace talks between India and Pakistan.


The clash began on Friday evening after militants belonging to the Al-Mansurin and Jamiat-ul Mujahideen militant group attacked a police vehicle.

"We have killed both the militants who had barricaded themselves inside a hotel and a shopping complex," a spokesman for India's Border Security Force, Virender Manhas, told journalists.

However, the militant Jamiat-ul Mujahideen group says two members of its group who were also involved managed to escape.

Soldiers also evacuated more than 70 civilians trapped in nearby buildings since the clash broke out.

Several journalists and civilians were caught in the crossfire.

Television cameraman Manzoor Ahmed was badly injured but hospital authorities say his condition has improved.

Hindus killed

Also on Friday, suspected Muslim militants raided a village in Indian-administered Kashmir, slitting the throats of five Hindus, police said.

The attackers entered Dhoob village, 200km (125 miles) north-west of Jammu and segregated Muslims from Hindus before the killings, the police said.

About 40,000 people have been killed in fighting between Indian security forces and militants in the region since 1989.

Violence has escalated after a period of relative calm following peace moves between India and Pakistan.

The peace moves are aimed at ending decades of dispute over Kashmir - a region both countries claim in its entirety.

India accuses Pakistan of sponsoring a violent uprising in Kashmir, a charge Islamabad denies.

Pakistan says it has only given diplomatic support to militant groups in the past and has now taken steps to ensure they no longer have bases in the country.

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