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Monday, 5 June, 2000, 11:45 GMT 12:45 UK
Five dead in latest Kashmir violence
Protest
Indian police clash with Kashmiri protestors
Five people, including three policemen have been killed in separate incidents of violence in Indian-administered Kashmir.

Police say suspected militants attacked policemen at three different places in the capital, Srinagar.

Two policemen were killed on the spot and one died later of his injuries. Two others were wounded in the attacks.

A militant group launched recently, Jaish-e-Mohammad, claimed responsibility for the attacks.

This is the second attack on policemen in Srinagar in recent months, and follows the deaths of six policemen in December last year.

Violent weekend

According to one report, the latest incidents took the number of people killed over the weekend to at least 39.

Five Indian soldiers were killed and four wounded in two separate gunbattles in Poonch district, 160 miles (260 km) to the north of Jammu.

Police
Indian police are in the frontline in Kashmir

"The encounters took place on late Saturday afternoon and lasted for several hours," said a defence official.

Three separatists including a leader of the Hizbul Mujahideen group, Abu Jaffer, were killed in the shootouts, the official said.

This followed Friday's bomb attack on a Shia Moslem congregation at Khwaja Gund-e-Qasim near Pattan town which killed 12.

Amongst the injured was the prominent Muslim Shia cleric, Maulvi Iftikhar Hussain Ansari.

The killings raised angry protests from the Shia Moslem sect in the valley, where a majority are Sunni Moslems.

Elsewhere in Kashmir, unidentified militants shot dead three civilians including an activist of Kashmir's ruling National Conference party, police said.

Two Indian soldiers were also killed by Pakistani shelling.

More than 30,000 people have been killed in separatist violence in the Himalayan region since 1990.

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See also:

03 Jun 00 | South Asia
Shia protests against Kashmir blast
31 May 00 | South Asia
Kashmir clashes leave 10 dead
14 May 00 | South Asia
Militants killed in Kashmir
19 Jan 00 | South Asia
On the defensive in Kashmir
15 Jul 99 | South Asia
Flashpoint Kashmir: Special Report
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