Tuesday, 26 September, 2017

Top LeT terrorist Junaid Mattoo killed in J&K encounter

Andrew Cummings | 19 June, 2017, 00:54

The militants ambushed a police party in Achabal area of south Kashmir on Friday evening, killing six policemen including Station House Officer of the area, Feroz Ahmad Dar.

Matoo, who carried a bounty of Rs. ten lakh on his head, made headlines by attacking a police van and killing three policemen previous year and was involved in several attacks on security forces.

Pakistan-based Lashker-e-Taiba has claimed responsibility for the attack, police said, adding it seems they wanted to take revenge of the Arwani encounter in which their local commander Junaid Mattoo is believed to have died.

He said it was not immediately clear whether the duo were part of the stone-pelting mob who tried to disrupt the anti- militancy operation in the village.

The protests erupted shortly after Friday prayers and were going on when reports last came in, officials said. However, no bodies have been recovered so far. A resident of Khudwan village in Kulgam, Mattoo joined a militant group at the age of 18 in June 2015 and has been active in terrorist activities since then.

The first incident took place in Arwani village located in south Kashmir's Kilgam district.

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Over two dozen other protesters were injured in the protests. "Our five policemen were killed in this cowardly act". Local residents said the militants fired several bullets at Dar, killing him on the spot.

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The ambush occurred at a time when a prolonged encounter between security forces and terrorists was underway in Arwani village of Bijbehara in the same district. A fierce gunfight raged in which three militants were killed, including top LeT commander Junaid Matoo.

During Friday's encounter, two civilians were also killed. He was involved in the killing of police Constable at Bogund on 15th of this month in Kulgam.

An Indian police officer detains a Kashmiri protester in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Friday, June 16, 2017. District magistrate Anantnag, Syed Abid Rashid confirmed the deaths of six policemen.

The two armies have traded heavy fire along the de facto border nearly daily in recent weeks, killing civilians and soldiers on both sides while accusing each other of breaching a 2003 ceasefire agreement.

As a result of the casualties, the separatists called for a protest shutdown and authorities imposed section 144 in south Kashmir.

Fighting erupted when the militants began firing in an attempt to break through the siege, Khan said.

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