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Eight dead as rebels storm police camp in Kashmir

Eight security officials were killed when gunmen stormed a heavily armed police camp in Kashmir, police said.

Four police officers, four paramilitary soldiers and two suspected militants died in the firefight when anti-India rebels in Kashmir entered the camp in the disputed Himalayan region.

The attack happened in southern Pulwama town early on Saturday when the rebels fired guns and threw grenades at the sentry, said Director-General of police S P Vaid.

In the initial attack, a policeman was killed and four other personnel, including a paramilitary soldier, were wounded.

Mr Vaid said police and paramilitary soldiers responded to the attack while a reinforcement of army soldiers and counter-insurgency police encircled the camp.

In the ensuing firefight inside the camp, three policemen and four paramilitary soldiers were killed.

He said that government forces evacuated dozens of police families.

Another police officer said troops recovered the bodies of two suspected militants. He said troops were searching a building in the sprawling camp for another militant.

No rebel group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.

As the fighting raged, hundreds young men, came out on the streets in Pulwama in solidarity with rebels while demanding the end of Indian rule over Kashmir and chanting pro-militant slogans.

Government forces fired tear gas, resulting in clashes with protesters, who hurled rocks at the troops. No one was reported injured in the clashes.

AP

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