- Hank Aaron steps to fundraising plate for Democrat Michelle Nunn
- ISIL terrorists blow up burial site of Jonah, vow more of same
- Impeach Obama, say 35 percent in new poll
- Taliban yank 14 Shiites off bus, bind and shoot them on Afghan road
- Obama takes aim at ‘corporate deserters’
- Dick’s Sporting Goods lays off 478 PGA golf pros
- Senators: Cease-fire must allow Israel to defend against rockets, tunnels
- Sierra Leone doctor fighting Ebola catches disease
- Iraq welcomes Russian fighter jets, helicopter gunships into ISIL fight
- John McCain laments: Obama’s ‘self-pity … is really kind of sad’
Indian leaders seek to quell Kashmir unrest as 5 more die
Question of the Day
SRINAGAR, India | Indian police opened fire Wednesday on Muslim demonstrators in a town near Kashmir, killing four people and wounding 30 as leaders of India’s main political parties debated how to end months of separatist protests in the region.
In another clash, one protester was killed and two were wounded when government forces used live ammunition in Sopore, a town northwest of Indian Kashmir’s main city, Srinagar, a police officer said.
Government soldiers fired when the protesters attacked them with stones while they were returning to their barracks, the officer said on the condition of anonymity.
The new clashes came two days after 18 protesters and a police officer were killed in street battles — the worst outbreak of violence in Kashmir in months of anti-India unrest this year.
In response to those protests, which were exacerbated by reports of a Koran desecration in the United States, authorities slapped a round-the-clock curfew across Indian-controlled Kashmir and threatened to shoot violators on sight.
The Koran issue resurfaced Wednesday, when thousands of protesters assembled close to a Christian school in the town of Mendhar, 115 miles southwest of Srinagar, Indian Kashmir’s main city, chanting “Down with Koran desecrators” and “We want freedom.”
Police fired tear gas and swung batons as the protesters tried to enter the school and used live ammunition when the crowd refused to disperse, said a police officer who spoke on the condition of anonymity, as he was not authorized to talk to reporters.
At least four protesters were killed and 30 others wounded, six of them critically, he said.
Angered by the deaths, hundreds of people arrived from neighboring villages and torched a court complex, a post office, a police headquarters and other government buildings, the officer said.
Mendhar, a predominantly Muslim town in the Jammu region next to Kashmir, was not under curfew when the protest broke out Wednesday.
Meanwhile, protesters defying the curfew in Srinagar were met with tear gas, and separatists burned two government vehicles in the southern town of Shopian, the officer said.
The recent eruption of violence has left the government searching for a new strategy for dealing with the protests, and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh gathered the nation’s top political leaders Wednesday to appeal for ideas.
Speaking at the start of the meeting, Mr. Singh accused separatist groups of orchestrating some of the violent protests. He appealed for calm in the region and said the government was willing to talk to any group that did not espouse violence.
“I have said this earlier, and I say it again: The only path for lasting peace and prosperity in Jammu and Kashmir is that of dialogue and discussion,” he said.
The meeting ended with an agreement to send a delegation to Kashmir to hear opinions from all sides, according to a statement released afterward.
TWT Video Picks
Second- and third-stringers eye 2016 if front-runner stumbles
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Obama orders Pentagon advisers to Ukraine
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- Michelle Obama says money in politics is bad, asks donors for 'big, fat check'
- PRUDEN: The Democratic-wannabe mice under Hillary Clinton's feet
- Hamas rejects Kerry's call for cease-fire; Fears grow others could join fight against Israel
- Presidents of Honduras, Guatemala blame U.S. for border children crisis
- Evidence shows Russia firing artillery into Ukraine: Pentagon
- Norway expects imminent 'concrete threat' from ISIL terrorists 'within days'
- Obama takes aim at 'corporate deserters'
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq