Pakistan: Attack by Indian soldiers leaves 14 dead

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The Independent Online

Pakistani officials accused Indian soldiers Friday of crossing over the disputed Kashmiri border and massacring 14 villagers, including four children. India strenuously denied the claim.

Pakistani officials accused Indian soldiers Friday of crossing over the disputed Kashmiri border and massacring 14 villagers, including four children. India strenuously denied the claim.

Several soldiers crept into Lanjod, a village barely 300 meters (yards) from the disputed border, and attacked villagers using knives, Pakistani officials said.

The victims were in one house for a religious gathering where they were reading the Koran, the Muslim holy book and sharing food, said a report on the state-owned Pakistan Television.

Five seriously wounded victims were taken to a nearby hospital, where one later died. Hospital officials said two of the 14 people killed had been decapitated.

The government announced Saturday would be a day of mourning.

However, military officials reached in India denied that the attack occurred.

"It is totally incorrect," said army spokesman Col. Shrutikant. "No such incident took place."

There was no independent confirmation of the attack, and it wasn't clear how Pakistani officials identified the assailants as Indian troops.

Tens of thousands of Pakistani and Indian soldiers face off across the disputed Kashmir border that divides the region between the two hostile neighbors. Shots are routinely fired across the border, striking military outposts and sometimes killing civilians.

Both countries trade heated accusations over the Himalayan region, which both nuclear-armed countries claim in its entirety. Kashmir has been the flashpoint of two wars between India and Pakistan, and tension there causes concern among the international community that it could lead to another confrontation.

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