India says Pakistan firing kills 2 soldiers in Kashmir

Villagers shout slogans during the cremation ceremony of Indian Army soldier Varun Katal in village Mawa in Samba district, 62 kilometers (51 miles) from Jammu, India, Sunday, Nov. 11, 2018. Katal was killed when Pakistani soldiers fired at Indian positions along the highly militarized frontier in disputed Kashmir on Saturday, Indian military said. (AP Photo/Channi Anand)

SRINAGAR, India (AP) — Two Indian soldiers were killed when Pakistani soldiers fired along the highly militarized de facto frontier that divides the disputed region of Kashmir between India and Pakistan, the Indian army said Sunday.

Pakistani soldiers on Sunday targeted a forward post in Rajouri sector along the Line of Control dividing Kashmir between the two rivals, said Lt. Col. Devender Anand, an Indian army spokesman. He said a soldier was killed after getting hit by sniper fire.

On Saturday, another Indian soldier was killed when he was hit by a sniper in Sunderbani sector, Anand said.

Anand called the two incidents a “blatant violation” of the 2003 cease-fire accord between India and Pakistan.

In a statement late Sunday, India’s military said its soldiers “retaliated strongly and effectively.”

Pakistan did not immediately comment.

In the past, each side has accused the other of starting the hostilities along the along the rugged and mountainous Line of Control, as well as a lower-altitude 200-kilometer (125-mile) somewhat defined portion of boundary separating Indian-controlled Kashmir and the Pakistani province of Punjab.

The fighting has become a predictable cycle of violence as the region convulses with decades-old animosities over Kashmir, where rebel groups demand that the territory be united either under Pakistani rule or as an independent country.

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