The Indian army has cordoned off the area of the attack in Jammu and Kashmir's Nagrota. Photo/AFP
The Indian army has cordoned off the area of the attack in Jammu and Kashmir's Nagrota. Photo/AFP

Islamist militants killed seven Indian soldiers, including two officers, in an attack on Nagrota cantonment near the Jammu-Srinagar highway early Tuesday.

The attack came two months after militants staged a similar pre-dawn raid on an army camp in Uri, Jammu and Kashmir, near the line of control killing 19 soldiers.

In a separate incident early Tuesday, Indian soldiers shot dead three Pakistani infiltrators near the line of control in Chamliyal of Samba sector, 70km from Nagrota.

Sources said three to four militants stormed an army unit at Nagrota. The vast cantonment area has been cordoned off, all schools closed and traffic suspended on the highway.

The gunfight in Chamliyal broke out after three militants fled to a power station. On search operation for more infiltrators is underway in the area.

Willing to hold talks

Attacks against Indian security forces have increased in recent months, while Indian and Pakistani cross-border firing along the heavily militarized frontier has intensified as tension between the nuclear-armed neighbors has risen.

The latest attacks came a day after Pakistan’s High Commissioner to India, Abdul Basit, was reported as saying Islamabad was willing to hold talks with New Delhi on the sidelines of the Heart of Asia conference scheduled for next week in Amritsar, Punjab.

They also came on the same day Pakistan’s new army chief, Lieutenant General Qamar Javed Bajwa, took charge.

India accuses Pakistan of supporting militants based on its side of the border who cross over to launch attacks. Pakistan denies that, accusing India of abusing the rights of Muslim Kashmiris opposed to Indian rule.

Kashmir has been gripped by protests since security forces killed a popular separatist leader in July. A crackdown in response to the protests has paralyzed much of the region.

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