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Militants Kill 34 in Northeast Indian States

August 15, 2003|From Reuters

AGARTALA, India — Militants fighting Indian rule in the remote northeastern part of the country killed 34 people in bomb blasts and shootouts as the nation tightened security on the eve of its Independence Day celebrations, officials said Thursday.

In two incidents in the volatile state of Tripura, armed militants fired indiscriminately, killing 11 people in Kamal Nagar and 14 in Krishnapura village.

"Unidentified tribal militants from either the All Tripura Tiger Force or the Nationalist Liberation Front of Tripura struck at Kamal Nagar and Krishnapura," said Dev Kumar Singh, deputy superintendent of the Tripura police.

Earlier, a remote-controlled bomb went off as a bus was crossing a bridge in neighboring Manipur state, killing six passengers and wounding 13, a police spokeswoman said.

"The incident appears to be connected with Independence Day," she said from the state capital, Imphal, about five miles from the site of the attack.

Tribal guerrillas in Tripura had also killed three Bengali settlers in a market late Wednesday, a police officer said.

The outlawed rebel groups are fighting for a separate homeland for tribal people. Both have called for a boycott of today's celebrations.

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