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Kashmir: Indian Troops Rape Girl & Mom

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    Protest in Kashmir Over Rape of Girl, Mother During House Search Sun Nov 7, 2004 07:35 AM ET SRINAGAR, India (Reuters) - Thousands of people in Indian Kashmir
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 8, 2004
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      Protest in Kashmir Over Rape of Girl, Mother During House Search

      Sun Nov 7, 2004 07:35 AM ET

      SRINAGAR, India (Reuters) -

      Thousands of people in Indian Kashmir staged a protest on Sunday,
      alleging that Indian soldiers had raped a 10-year-old girl and her
      mother, police and witnesses said. The Indian army denied the
      allegation, the third against defense and police personnel in the
      troubled Himalayan region in the last 10 days.

      "There is no question of rape," army spokesman Lieutenant Col V.K.
      Batra said, adding that the matter was being investigated.

      Police said they registered a case against seven army personnel on
      Saturday for another alleged rape in southern Kashmir, while on Oct.
      29, another two soldiers and a policeman were arrested on similar
      charges.

      Witnesses said more than 2,000 protesters shouted slogans against
      the Indian army and the government on Sunday in Handwara town, 80 km
      (50 miles) north of Srinagar, Kashmir's summer capital.

      Police said protesters blocked the main street of the town and
      shouted slogans such as "we want justice."

      They said soldiers allegedly raped the woman and her daughter at
      their house at Baderpayeen village on outskirts of Handwara when
      troops were searching their home.

      Batra said there was nobody in the house during the search.

      "The soldiers were searching a suspect contact when they entered
      this house. All the inmates of the house were taken outside the
      house," he said.

      Human rights groups blame the Indian army and militant groups for
      widespread abuses in Kashmir. Indian authorities deny the
      allegations, saying they investigate all reports and punish the
      guilty.

      Security agencies allege that fighting in Kashmir has declined this
      year, largely due to a crackdown by troops.

      The decline coincides with a peace process launched by India and
      Pakistan last year to resolve a wide range of disputes, including
      Kashmir where tens of thousands of people have been killed in 15-
      years of a revolt for independence.

      http://www.aljazeerah.info/ - Nov 8, 2004 issue

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