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India claims to have killed ‘key conspirator’ of February’s deadly Kashmir bombing

India claims to have killed ‘key conspirator’ of February’s deadly Kashmir bombing
Indian troops reportedly shot a top commander from JeM, the militant group behind a suicide attack in Kashmir which killed over 40 Indian police officers. The terror attack led to intense air combat between India and Pakistan.

Mudasir Ahmed Khan, described by authorities as a top commander, is believed to have been killed in an encounter with Indian government forces and was said to be involved in “planning and executing several terror attacks,” local media reported citing the statement from the Kashmir police.

Officials claim the man was affiliated with Jaish-e-Mohammed militant group and was the “key conspirator” of the suicide car bomb attack in Kashmir’s disputed Pulwama district on February 14. 

Khan and another militant, a Pakistani national codenamed Khalid were trapped and killed on Sunday in the city of Tral in Indian-administered Kashmir, police said. It took time for the officials to identify the identities of the fighters as their bodies were charred beyond recognition.

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Both men were wanted by authorities in India for “a series of terror crimes, including [an] attack on security establishments,” the police elaborated.

On February 14, a car packed with 350kgs of explosives overtook the large convoy of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) outside Kashmir’s capital Srinagar and rammed into a bus killing over 40 people. The attack has become the deadliest in the disputed region since the 1989 armed revolt in which tens of thousands were killed. Pakistan-based Islamist militant group claimed responsibility for the terror act but Islamabad has denied allegations that it supports armed insurgents in the area.

The incident deteriorated the already tense relations between India and Pakistan and led to a series of air combats between the nuclear-armed states. India and Pakistan accused each other of cross-border fire that has claimed civilian casualties on both sides of the Line of Control.

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The latest tit-for-tat clashes between Islamabad and New Delhi raised fears of a full-fledged military conflict in the region. Turkey, Iran, and Russia have already volunteered to mediate between the two rivals in southern Asia.

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