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Heavy mortar shelling on combat posts

January 08, 2002

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JAMMU, Jan 7: Indian and Pakistani frontline troops clashed Monday, firing hundreds of mortar shells at each other’s combat posts and villages along the Line of Control, officials said.

Indian army officials said the clashes which began at 10:10am continued for several hours around the border district of Poonch.

They said the rival armies fired at least 1,500 mortar shells but reports of casualties and damages to buildings were not immediately known.

Indian villages such as Malti, Digwar, Gulpur and seven other hamlets and posts bore the brunt of the shelling which ebbed later in the day, the army officials said from Poonch by telephone.

“We can now see army helicopters landing, possibly evacuating casualties,” said one resident, who described Monday’s exchanges as among the heaviest of recent days.—AFP