Cross-LoC firing reaches Kupwara, soldier killed

Cross-LoC firing reaches Kupwara, soldier killed
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Shelling continues in Uri, border trade stopped

Baramulla: An army soldier was killed in cross-border firing in Machil sector of frontier Kupwara district on Thursday. Official sources said that Pakistani forces violated the ceasefire and targeted several Indian army posts in Uri and Machil sectors of north Kashmir. A soldier was killed along the Line of Control (LoC) in Machil sector while a residential house was damaged in Uri sector of Baramulla district.
Cross-LoC firing started on Wednesday morning in Uri when Pakistani troops targeted Indian army posts in Kamalkot sector. Two Indian army troops were injured in this firing. On Wednesday evening, both armies used heavy machine guns and mortar shelling to target each other, this exchange continuing all night.
On Thursday morning, after a brief lull, the forces resumed cross-border firing. The residential house and a tin shed of a local resident, Hakim Ali Mir, son of Atta Mohammad Mir, resident of Kundi Barjala Kamalkote, was damaged partially after it came under a mortar shell fired from across the LoC, official sources said.
They added that the wall of another house, belonging to Liyaqat Ali, son of Mutwali Khan, was also damaged due to a mortar shell.
The sources said that after Uri, the cross-border firing reached Kupwara LoC, where both the armies traded heavy fire. An Indian army soldier was killed in this firing. The identity of the slain soldier has not been disclosed yet.
Srinagar-based PRO of Indian Army, Col Rajash Kalia said that Pakistani forces violated the ceasefire in Machil sector and the troops of Indian army retaliated.
Local residents of Machil said that troops from both sides targeted each other at several posts, and the firing continued all day with brief breaks.
They said that people living close to the LoC are under stress and depression from the constant conflict and appealed to both nations to end it.
Senior Congress leader Choudhery Taj Mohiuddin said he was worried about the civilian population living along the LoC. He, too, appealed to both India and Pakistan to solve their issues through dialogue.
“I have seen the cross-border shelling of 2003 in which a large number of people lost their lives while some were handicapped. We want peace in the region and both the nations to be friends,” he said.
A senior police officer at Baramulla confirmed that mortar shelling and firing was continuing in Kamalkot sector in Uri. Sources said that due to the shelling and firing, the authorities on both sides of Kashmir have stopped cross-LoC trade through Uri.