At least 13 people were killed in Indian Kashmir Wednesday in a series of violent incidents involving Indian security forces and militants.
Indian officials say several gunbattles erupted when police and soldiers raided suspected rebel hideouts in the Udhampur and Poonch districts. They say seven militants were killed in the clashes, along with two Indian security personnel.
In another incident, India's military says four youths were killed in crossfire as Indian troops battled militants in the Kupwara district of northern Kashmir. The civilian deaths triggered protests by residents of Kupwara against the security forces.
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is to hold talks with Kashmiri political leaders on Saturday to try to stop the violence. But several prominent Kashmiri separatists have said they will not attend the talks.Some information for this report was provided by AFP.