5 militants killed in Valley gunbattle: Army

The Army Monday claimed to have killed five foreign militants in a gunbattle in Ganderbal district in central Kashmir.

"The operation was launched early morning in Phalinard Wangat forests. In the operation, five foreign militants were killed after a brief encounter," Defence spokesman, Lt Col J S Brar told The Indian Express.

The police identified four of the slain militants as Abu Bakar, Abu Khalid, Murtaza and Abdul Gazi. "They belonged to the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen. Five AK-47 rifles, 15 magazines, two UBGLs and scores of bullets were recovered from the encounter site," a police spokesman added.

The slain men, sources in the police said, were part of a group that infiltrated into the valley a month ago. "As per our reports, these militants were part of an 11-member group that entered the valley last month. Two members of the group had been killed in the same area earlier," the sources said. "We have been keeping a tab on their activities."

The encounter came just a week after the Army had claimed to have foiled an infiltration bid in Keran. The Army had said it intercepted and engaged in a gunbattle a group of militants when they tried to cross the Line of Control into Keran, forcing them to flee back to Pakistan occupied Kashmir.

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