Thirteen civilians were killed when Indian security forces opened fire. The army mistakenly believed that they were following a truckload of rebels carrying day laborers from a nearby town. One soldier was also killed in clashes with residents in the area.
Dozens of people, outraged by the mistake made by Indian authorities, mistakenly killed 13 people and set fire to army camps on Saturday, December 4, during an operation against militants in the northeastern Indian state of Nagaland.
The death toll is rising as a member of the security forces was shot dead during a clash with a mob of people who had infiltrated the barracks.
The Nagaland government said in a statement that “13 civilians were killed and several others were injured in the firing by security forces in the area between Mr and Otting village on Saturday.”
Authorities in the area said most of the deaths were after a special forces unit opened fire on a truck carrying about 30 coal miners from a city in the region.
Soldiers of one of the country’s oldest paramilitary forces, known as the Assam Rifles, misunderstood these people as fighters of insurgent groups who have been fighting for decades for the independence of the Indian subcontinent and parts of Myanmar. .
An anonymous police source, quoted by Reuters as saying, “The soldiers had intelligence about an extremist movement in the area. When they saw the truck, they mistaken the miners for insurgents and opened fire, killing six workers.”
Moments later, members of local towns retaliated against the army and eight more civilians were killed in clashes, including members of the security forces.
“Most reprehensible” incident: Local
Shortly afterwards, the Indian Ministry of Defense said the deaths were during a planned operation “based on credible information on the movement of insurgents” and that “the cause of the unfortunate casualties was being investigated and appropriate action would be taken at the highest level and in accordance with the law.”
For his part, the head of the Nagaland government, Naypyidaw Rio, said on his Twitter account that “the unfortunate incident that led to the death of a civilian in Oding (…) is highly reprehensible” and that it was a consequence. Intelligence has failed, so the investigation will be opened to punish the culprits.
For decades, various tribal groups have settled in northeastern India, forming insurgent groups and accusing the government of plundering their resources and doing little to improve the living standards of those living in the area.
With Reuters, EFE and AP
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