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Indians flee border village as Pakistan violates Kashmir ceasefire

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Updated: 05:01 GMT, Jul 7, 2015 | Published: 06:10 GMT, Jul 6, 2015 |
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Pakistani Rangers fired across the Line of Control (LoC) in Arnia sector of India’s northern Jammu and Kashmir state on Sunday (July 05), giving jitters to residents living along the border area. Anxious residents spent the night outside their houses as mortar shells were fired from Pakistan’s side.

Some residents chose to move to safer areas and left the town with their families as firing refused to stop.

The ceasefire violation comes as a grim reminder of the border tension in October last year when firing fromPakistan along the 200-km (125-mile) stretch of border, mostly Muslim region of Kashmir, killed scores and caused extensive property damage.

Exchanges of sporadic fire are common along the de facto border dividing the countries, despite a ceasefire pact signed in 2003.

Since they split 67 years ago, the nations have fought each other in three wars, two over Kashmir. There has not been a full-blown war since they both tested nuclear weapons in 1998.

Both claim all of Kashmir’s Himalayan mountains and fertile valleys. Their shared border is among the most heavily militarized in the world and travel between the two nations is kept to a minimum.

India has for years accused Muslim Pakistan of backing separatist Muslim rebels in India’s part of Kashmir.Pakistan denies arming the militants saying it only gives them diplomatic support in the face of human rights abuses by Indian forces.