Seven killed in raid on bank van in India-held Kashmir

Seven people including five policemen were killed Monday when suspected separatists attacked a bank van carrying cash in India-held Kashmir, police said.

“All the seven in the van, five policemen and two bank employees, were killed,” Director General of Police S P Vaid told AFP.

The van was returning to a bank in the village of Pumbai in Kulgam district, around 70 kilometres south of the main city of Srinagar, when it came under fire, Vaid said.

Another police officer told AFP on condition of anonymity that the attackers made off with cash and weapons.

Suspected separatists in recent months have targeted banks across Indian-held Kashmir, where several armed groups have been fighting against Indian rule for decades.

Last week police said they foiled a bank raid in the southern district of Anantnag by two men who opened fire on paramilitary guards. One of the attackers was arrested whereas another managed to escape.

Anti-India sentiment runs deep in Kashmir, where most people favour independence or a merger with Pakistan.

Kashmir has been divided between India and Pakistan since the end of British rule in 1947 but both claim the territory in its entirety.

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