Army foils fidayeen attack, three Killed
8 January 2002
Srinagar: An Army personnel and two militants of Lashkar-e-Taiba were killed on Tuesday when the Pakistan-backed ultras attempted to storm a military camp in Kupwara in north Kashmir, defence and police sources said. The three militants believed to be a suicide squad, hurled grenades and fired indiscriminately when intercepted by troops manning a traffic check-point outside the 68 mountain brigade headquarters at Trehgam, 96 kms from here, at 9.40 in the morning, they said. The sources said the troops gunned down two of the militants - Mushtaq Ahmed and Abu Ayaal- both residents of Pakistan occupied Kashmir. A jawan was also killed and a military policeman injured in the shootout that lasted nearly half-an-hour. The third militant, however, managed to escape and is believed to be hiding in the nearby residential area, they said. Army has laid a cordon around the area and intermittent firing between the militant and the search parties was reported, the sources added. Pro-Pakistan Jamiat-ul-Mujahideen outfit claimed that the attack was carried out by its cadres, even as police and Army held Lashker-e-Toiba responsible for the strike. ''Three of our Mujahideen barged into the camp and carried out the attack when the Army personnel were taking tea,'' JuM spokesman Jameel Ahmad told reporters by telephone. Two members of the suicide squad were killed in the retaliatory action, while the third, a resident of Kupwara, reached his hideout and contacted the outfit leaders, he said.