LeT chief's 'nephew' killed in encounter in north Kashmir

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Srinagar, Jan 19: A top Lashkar-e-Taiba militant, believed to be nephew of the 2008 Mumbai attack mastermind Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, was today gunned down by security forces in an encounter in north Kashmir's Bandipora district.

Abu Musaib, a self-styled divisional commander of LeT, was active in Bandipora and Ganderbal districts since August 2015 and involved in many militancy-related activities including a suicide attack on a CRPF camp on Independence Day in downtown Srinagar last year, police said.

A police spokesman said the force, aided by Rashtriya Rifles and CRPF personnel, cordoned off Para Mohalla locality of Hajin, 32 kms from here, following specific information about the presence of militants there in the morning. The hiding militant opened fire on the joint search party, triggering an encounter. The gunfight ended with the killing of a militant who was later identified as Musaib, a Pakistani national, the spokesman said.

"Musaib, reportedly a nephew of LeT operations chief Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, was functioning as self-style divisional commander of the terrorist group in the Valley," he said. An AK-56 rifle, three magazines, 66 rounds, a radio set and three grenades were seized from the encounter site.

"The militant was active in Bandipora and Ganderbal districts since August 2015 and was involved in many militancy -related activities which included weapon snatching of an army personnel of 14 Rashtriya Rifles in Bandipora in October 2015.

"He was responsible for injuring a civilian at Hajin, and firing on an army patrol of 13 Rashtriya Rifles in which two personnel were killed last year. "He played an active role in organising the Fidayeen attack at Nowhatta locality of downtown Srinagar on August 15 last year," the spokesman said.

PTI 

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