Srinagar: Five Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) separatist guerrillas were killed in a fierce gunfight with security forces in Jammu and Kashmir`s Baramulla district, police said Friday.
The exchange of gunfire between the guerrillas and the security forces in Sheikhpora area, nearly 80 km from here, lasted for nearly 12 hours.
"Though individual identities are still being established, all the five slain militants belonged to the LeT," Deputy Inspector General of Police AQ Manhas said.
Two soldiers of the Indian Army were also killed in the gunfight.
"The army and local police conducted a joint operation late yesterday (Thursday) following precise information that a group of militants were hiding in Sheikhpora forest."
"The security forces challenged the hiding militants, who opened fire resulting in a gunbattle. Searches, are however, still on," Inspector General of Police Farooq Ahmad said.
Just two days earlier, a major and a soldier of the army were killed in north Kashmir when security forces were ambushed in Bandipora district`s Chatibandi village.
As the melting snow has thrown open the mountain passes leading to the Kashmir Valley, army and intelligence officials say more armed guerrillas are waiting on the Pakistan frontier to sneak into Jammu and Kashmir.
"Security-wise, it could be a hot summer in Jammu and Kashmir this year," an intelligence officer here said.