World / Asia-Pacific

Fresh killings in Indian-controlled Kashmir clashes raise death toll to 21

(Xinhua) Updated: 2016-07-11 13:46

SRINAGAR, Indian-controlled Kashmir -- Clashes in Indian-controlled Kashmir between protesters and government forces continued for the second straight day Sunday despite curfew, pushing death toll to 21 including a policeman, officials said.

The latest killing took place in the evening at Tengpora in Srinagar, where policemen fired upon a youth. A senior health official at SKIMS Medical College Bemina Dr Reyaz Untoo told media the youth was brought dead to the hospital.

"He had bullet injuries in abdomen," Untoo said.

The clashes and violent anti-India demonstrations triggered following the killing of a popular militant commander Burhan Muzaffar Wani in a gunfight. Wani was killed along with two associates on Friday.

"There has been no respite in the ongoing clashes and we have information that so far 21 people (20 protesters and one policeman) were killed since yesterday," an official said. "The policeman was killed due to drowning after the vehicle he was driving was pushed into river by protesters."

Officials said the armoured police vehicle was pushed into river by angry protesters at Sangam village in southern district of Anantnag.

Meanwhile, local government spokesman Nayeem Akhtar appealed people not to agitate and sought the support of the mainstream and separatist political parties to restore calm in the restive region.

"The cabinet which met under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti expressed grief and anguish over the loss of precious human lives and made a fervent appeal to all shades of political opinion, including the mainstream and the separatists, to help restore calm as the violence has neither served any purpose in the past nor is it going to do so in the prevailing circumstances," Akhtar said.

Akthar, who is also a minister in the local government walked out of the press conference and refused to answer questions from media.

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