2 Indian Soldiers Killed In Kashmir

9 July 2015
Associated Press
Aijaz Hussain

Srinagar: At least two Indian soldiers were killed in an exchange of gunfire with Pakistani troops and Kashmiri insurgents in two separate incidents in Indian-controlled Kashmir, Indian officials said Thursday. The fighting erupted ahead of a meeting slated for Friday between the Indian and Pakistani prime ministers on the sidelines of a summit in Russia. Indian Army spokesman Lt. Col Nitin N. Joshi accused Pakistani troops of violating a cease-fire accord between the two countries Thursday in the border district of Nowgam and firing on Indian soldiers. The Indian forces retaliated and lost one paramilitary soldier, said Vishwa Bandhu, a spokesman for India's Border Security Force. Kashmiri insurgents fired on Indian soldiers Wednesday night in the southern Kashmiri district of Shopian where they were hiding, Joshi said. An Indian army soldier who was injured in the fighting later died in a hospital, Joshi said. India and Pakistan have fought two wars over Kashmir, which has been divided between them since British colonialists left in 1947. Pakistan Foreign Ministry spokesman Qazi Khalilullah said Thursday that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will meet with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi on Friday in the Russian city of Ufa, site of summits of the BRICS trade group and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Earlier this week, the two sides exchanged fire at a border city near the Pakistani city of Sialkot. One Indian paramilitary soldier was killed Sunday, said Garib Das, a top Indian police officer. Last summer, India called off official-level talks after Islamabad's ambassador in New Delhi met with Kashmiri separatist leaders. India accuses Pakistan of arming and training Kashmiri insurgents who have been fighting since 1989 for independence or a merger with Pakistan, which denies the charge.