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India, Pakistan Trade Charges Of Killing Civilians In Kashmir

FILE: Indian Border Security Force (BSF) soldiers patrol along the border fence at an outpost along the India-Pakistan border in Abdulian, 38 kms southwest of Jammu.

India and Pakistan traded accusations that each had killed civilians in cross-border shelling in Kashmir on October 28.

Pakistani officials said that three civilians, including a young girl, were killed as Indian troops shelled villages along the Line of Control, while Indian officials said two civilians died when Pakistani shells hit India's side of the contested border.

The Indian Army also charged that militants at the Line of Control mutilated the body of an Indian soldier they'd killed before crossing back into Pakistan under cover of fire from Pakistani Army posts.

"This act will invite an appropriate response," the Indian Army said.

The reports of bloodshed came just a day after New Delhi and Islamabad expelled each other's diplomats over the rising tensions in Kashmir.

Shelling by both sides in the divided and disputed Himalayan region has been going on since gunmen killed 19 Indian soldiers in September at an army camp in Kashmir, an attack India blamed on Pakistan-based militants.

Indian-administered Kashmir has also been rocked by street protests which began after the July killing of a militant leader there. Indian officials have blamed Pakistan for fanning that unrest.

Based on reporting by AP, AFP, dpa, and Reuters