Search for terrorists in JK forest belt enters 21st day, freeway reopens for site visitors after 2 weeks

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The authorities reopened a stretch of the Jammu-Rajouri nationwide freeway for site visitors on Sunday morning, greater than two weeks after it was shut in view of an ongoing counter-insurgency operation in an adjoining dense forest belt, officers mentioned.

The operation to trace down a gaggle of hiding terrorists, who’re liable for the killing of 9 troopers, in Bhatti Durrian forest in Mendhar together with Surankote forest in Poonch and close by Thanamandi in Rajouri district entered the 21st day on Sunday, the officers mentioned.

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While the operation is underway, the authorities allowed site visitors on the primary freeway between Bhimber Gali in Mendhar and Jera Wali Gali in Surankote in Jammu and Kashmir’s Poonch district, a lot to the aid of residents, particularly taxi operators who’ve been demanding its reopening.

The highway stretch, which passes alongside the cordoned-off forest belt, was closed as a precautionary measure on October 15, a day after 4 military personnel, together with a JCO, had been killed in an trade of fireside with the hiding terrorists in Bhatti Durrian forest, the officers mentioned.

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The operation began in Surankote forest on October 11 following the killing of 5 troopers, together with a JCO, and was subsequently prolonged to Mendhar to neutralize the fleeing terrorists.

A Pakistani terrorist, who was moved from the Kot Bhalwal Central Jail in Jammu to Mendhar on police remand for questioning in reference to the continuing operation, was killed when the safety forces accompanying him to establish a hideout got here beneath fireplace from hiding terrorists on October 24.

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The contact with the hiding terrorists was solely established twice on October 11 at Surankote and Thanamandi and once more at Bhatti Durrian on October 14, the officers mentioned. After the firing on October 24 in Bhatti Durrian which left the Pakistani terrorist killed, there was no contact with the hiding terrorists.

A significant a part of the forest belt was cleared to permit the authorities to reopen the freeway and villagers to renew regular actions, the officers mentioned.

They mentioned there was no breakthrough towards the holed up terrorists who’re avoiding direct contact with the search events and are on the run benefiting from thick foliage, pure caves and tough terrain.

“The operation is now going on deep inside the forest with a number of natural caves. The search parties are clearing the caves and moving cautiously to neutralize the suspected terrorists,” an official mentioned.

Over a dozen individuals, together with two ladies, had been detained thus far for questioning after it got here to gentle that they allegedly supplied logistic help, together with meals and shelter, to the terrorists, the officers mentioned.

Rajouri and Poonch in Jammu area have witnessed an increase in infiltration makes an attempt since June this 12 months, ensuing within the killing of 9 terrorists in separate encounters.

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