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Four killed in Indian shelling

May 18, 2002

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SIALKOT, May 17: Four villagers, including an old woman, were killed and 40 others wounded when India intensified mortar shelling on Pakistani villages along the Working Boundary on Friday.

Official sources said that the villagers were sitting in the courtyards of their houses when Indian forces fired heavy mortar shells, killing four of them and wounding 40 others. The wounded were admitted to the CMH where the condition of most of them was stated to be critical.

Three of the deceased were identified as Naziran, wife of Nazir Ahmad; Suleman Noor, son of Noor Mahi, and Abdul Hameed, son of Abdul Hamid, residents of Boorhey Chak in the Shakargarh-Narowal sector. The fourth deceased could not be identified.

AFP ADDS: “The Pakistan army retaliated effectively and targeted the enemy’s military positions causing considerable damage. The enemy was busy removing their dead and wounded soldiers when last reports came in,” a Pakistan army statement said on Friday.

The firing during the past 24 hours was reported in Marala, Mirajke, Shakargarh, Neelam and Rawla Kot sectors, the army said.

Earlier, an Indian army spokesman alleged that Pakistani troops had opened “unprovoked” fire early in the morning on Indian posts in the Samba, R.S. Pura and Kathua sectors of occupied Kashmir.

The shelling killed a boy and wounded four people in Arnia sector, and three people were wounded in the Poonch sector, Colonel S.P.K. Singh, spokesman for the Indian army’s Northern Command, said.

“Small-arms fire — from medium and light machine guns — is common in this area on the border,” said the colonel.