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Lashkar commander among 5 militants shot dead in Poonch

February 28, 2004 19:02 IST

Five Lashker-e-Toiba militants, including a platoon commander, were killed and a huge cache of arms seized in a fierce gun battle with security personnel in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir Saturday, official sources said.

Acting on an intelligence input about the presence of a terrorist training camp in Dara Sangla forest belt, the security forces cordoned off the area this morning, the sources told PTI.

When the militants hiding there lobbed grenades and opened fire, the security forces retaliated and in the ensuing gunbattle five militants including Abu Fakri, a self-styled platoon commander, were killed.

The operation was still on and two more militants are hiding in the area, they said.

Identities of other slain militants are being ascertained, they said adding five AK rifles, two pistols, 17 magazines, 318 rounds, nine grenades, four IEDS and some other materials have been recovered so far.

Elsewhere, in an apparent case of revenge killing, a Hizbul Mujahideen militant identified as Mohmmad Sharief was killed by Lashkar ultras in the Mahore forest area of Udhampur district Friday night, sources said.

Sharief had allegedly killed two close relatives of a Lashkar commander in Mahore a fortnight ago, they said adding he was killed to avenge the deaths.

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