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Pakistan: India shells kill three children in Kashmir
Published on 20-11-2016 - at 01:23' by Al Jazeera

Pakistan says three children are killed by Indian mortar shells that hit their house in Kashmir’s Kotli district.

An official in the Pakistani-administered area of Kashmir has accused Indian forces of firing mortar shells that targeted a village along the disputed Line of Control (LOC), leaving three children killed and three others injured .

"Two girls and their brother died when mortar shells fired by Indian troops hit their house in Kotli district along the Line of Control (LOC)," Raja Arif Mehmodd, a local administration official, told AFP on Saturday.

He said the eldest girl was aged 10 and the youngest girl was five.

"All belonged to the same family," he added.

Indian news sites citing government sources have also reported ongoing clashes in another Kashmir district of Pulwama, but made no mention of the three child deaths in Kotli.

The reports from Indian Express and Times of India claimed armed men holed up in the Kakapora area of Pulwama opened fire at Indian security forces.

Indian forces exchanged fire with the group, killing one fighter, they added.

Both Pakistani military and Indian defence officials have confirmed the exchange of fire along the LOC.

"Indian troops resort to unprovoked firing in Tander and Baroh areas of Bhimber sector today," said a statement issued by the Pakistani military, adding that no loss of life was reported in those clashes.

’Unprovoked ceasefire violation’

An unnamed Indian defence spokesman also confirmed to Indian media clashes in two areas of Rajouri district along the LOC, blaming the Pakistani army for the "unprovoked ceasefire violation".

The latest incidents come a day after Pakistan’s navy said it had "pushed" an Indian submarine away from Pakistani waters, as tensions between the nuclear-armed rivals continue to smoulder over unrest in the disputed Kashmir region.

Tensions across the long-disputed de facto Himalayan border reached dangerous levels in September, when India blamed Pakistani armed groups for a raid on an army base that killed 19 soldiers.

India said it had responded by carrying out "surgical strikes" across the heavily militarised border, sparking a furious reaction from Islamabad, which denied the strikes took place.

There have since been repeated outbreaks of cross-border firing, with both sides reporting deaths and injuries including of civilians.

Kashmir has been divided between India and Pakistan since the end of British colonial rule in 1947. Both claim the Himalayan territory in full and have fought two wars over the mountainous region.

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Kashmir has been divided between India and Pakistan since the end of British rule in 1947

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