Gunfight in Sopore forests, one Pakistani militant killed, 3 escape

Srinagar: A gunfight broke out between militants and government forces in a forest area in north Kashmir’s Sopore district late Monday evening in which one Pakistani militant was killed while two Pakistani and one local militant, affiliated with the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT), escaped, according to police.
The gunfight began at about 7:30 PM, following a massive cordon and search operation launched in the area by a joint team of police and army.
A senior police official from the area said that a cordon and search operation was launched in the forest area, following specific inputs regarding the presence of militants in the area.
“Contact was soon established with the hiding militants and they were asked to surrender,” the police official said, adding that the militants however chose to open fire which was duly retaliated, triggering a gunfight.
IGP Kashmir Vijy Kumar tweeted late in the evening: “01 #Pakistani #terrorist affiliated with proscribed #terror outfit LeT killed. #Incriminating materials including arms & ammunition recovered. 2 FTs and one local terrorist escaped from cordon. Search going on. Further details shall follow.”
Today’s gunfight was the second in the month of June. Earlier, on June 4, a Hizb commander was killed in a gunfight with government forces in Anantnag district of south Kashmir.
The gunfights have continued after a particularly bloody last week of May, wherein more than 16 militants were killed in around 7 gunfights, along with a policeman. There have been attacks on non-locals, Kashmiri Pandits, and on-leave policemen in different parts of Kashmir, as violence has climbed up steeply across Kashmir.
Security has meanwhile been beefed up with additional forces being brought in ahead of the Amarnath Yatra, which will be starting by the end of this month and will continue for around 40 days.


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