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Three militants killed in gunfight in Indian-administered Kashmir

Three rebels including a senior militant leader were killed in a gun battle with security forces in Indian-administered Kashmir on Wednesday, police said.

Three rebels including a senior militant leader were killed in a gun battle with security forces in Indian-administered Kashmir on Wednesday, police said.

A search operation was launched by a joint army and police team in the Pulwama district following intelligence reports of a militant presence in the area.

The gunfight battle began after the rebels opened fire at the security personnel, prompting them to retaliate, a local police officer said on condition of anonymity.

“The slain militants were identified as cadre of the Hizbul Mujahideen, a major militant group operating in Kashmir.

One of them, Jehangir Rafiq Wani, was a regional commander in the outfit,” the officer said, adding there were no injuries suffered by security forces.

Arms, ammunition and grenades were recovered from the site where the exchange of fire took place.

Security personnel have been on high alert in Jammu and Kashmir ever since its special autonomous status was scrapped on August last year.

Indian-administered Kashmir has seen a separatist insurgency since the 1980s in which tens of thousands of people have been killed.

India claims that Pakistan supports Kashmiri militants, a charge Islamabad denies, calling them freedom fighters.

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