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Siachen survivor Lance Naik Hanumanthappa dies

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New Delhi: The lone survivor of Feb 3 incident at Siachen avalanche Lance Naik Hanamanthappa Koppad, who was also called as miracle soldier after being found alive under snow and ice where he was stuck for six days, passed away on Thursday.

Koppad was admitted in Army Hospital, where he fought for life for two days.

He took his last breath at 11:45 on Thursday morning confirmed an Army statement.

PM Narendra Modi tweeted, “Koppad leaves us sad and devastated. RIP Lance Naik Hanumanthappa. The soldier in you remains immortal. Proud that martyrs like you served India.”

Doctors said on the morning that braveheart Hanamanthappa’s condition remain extremely critical, with worsening multi-organ dysfunction.

Koppad was suffering from pneumonia which worsened the condition and blood clotting disorder showed no sign of reversal despite blood component support.

Millions across the country had prayed for his recovery,  but he didn’t.

Koppad was found under 35 feet of snow and ice in Siachen glacier in Jammu and Kashmir, with other nine dead soldiers.

Koppad family from Karnataka were staying in Hospital complex.

Koppad served the country for 10 out of 13 years. He was posted in Jammu and Kashmir from 2003 to 2006 and involved in counter-insurgency operations.

He again volunteered to serve from 2008 to 2010 with 54 Rashtriya Rifles in Jammu and Kashmir and later in the northeast from 2010 to 2012.

He was serving Siachen glacier from August 2015. (IANS)(image:huffingtonpost.in)

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Two soldiers, policeman killed in pre-dawn attack in Kashmir’s Baramulla district

The curfew and separatist-called shutdown on August 17, continued to paralyse normal life for the 40th day in a row

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Kashmir
Protesters vs Security forces, (representational Image) Wikimedia

August 17, 2016: In a pre-dawn attack, two soldiers and a policeman were killed on Wednesday, when militants ambushed an Indian Army convoy on a highway in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district – the second deadly strike on security forces in three days.

The attack comes amid the deadliest Kashmir unrest in six years that began after the July 8 killing of rebel commander Burhan Wani. The militant’s death has provoked angry protests by Kashmiri youth who hail Wani as their hero.

As the street unrest continues, militant violence has also escalated in the state.

Security officials blamed the unrest on the surge in militant attacks after years of decline.

“Militants have been able to consolidate as security forces remain busy in controlling the unrest,” a top police officer told IANS in Baramulla where the latest attack occurred.

The officer said heavily armed men ambushed an army convoy near Baramulla town around 3. 30 a.m. and killed two soldiers. They struck again and killed one policeman when a police deployment reached there.

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Authorities have said some 60 militants have managed to sneak into the valley from Pakistan in the weeks of unrest.

Violence in Kashmir started after killing of Burhan Wani. Image Source: defence.pk
Violence in Kashmir started after killing of Burhan Wani. Image Source: defence.pk

At least four security personnel were injured in the attack, which comes two days after militants killed a paramilitary commandant in Srinagar on Independence Day. Militants also attacked a police station in south Kashmir’s Pulwama district late on Tuesday, injuring five policemen.

The Kashmir Valley has been on the boil for nearly six weeks now. Some 63 civilians have been killed in firing by security forces during clashes with protesters. At least two policemen have also been killed.

Schools, shops, banks and offices have remained closed in much of the valley as police and paramilitary troopers patrol on roads to prevent people from coming out on the streets.

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The curfew and separatist-called shutdown on Wednesday continued to paralyse normal life for the 40th day in a row.

The curfew and communications blackout have, however, failed to bring calm in the valley. Separatists have called for a march to the UN office in Srinagar and a 72-hour sit-in if security forces stop them. (IANS)

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Kashmir Killings: Six more die in Kashmir frenzy, death toll 21

The government said it was also trying to arrange flights to fly out the thousands of tourists stranded in the valley due to the violence

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Srinagar: Protesters throwing stones on police vehicle during a protest following the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Muzaffar Wani along with his two associates, in Srinagar on Saturday. PTI Photo by S Irfan (PTI7_9_2016_000126B)
  • Fresh firing by security forces in Pulwama district of north Kashmir led to the death of Faiyaz Ahmed Mir
  • Shabir Ahmed, 27, was shot and wounded by security forces during a street protest Irfan
  • Ahmad Malik, 17, was also killed on Sunday in firing in Pulwama after a curfew-defying mob attacked the security forces

The Jammu and Kashmir government appealed for calm on Sunday, July 10, as six more people died in unending demonstrations against the killing of a top militant leader, taking the death toll to 21 in two days in curfew-bound Kashmir Valley.

Shabir Ahmed, 27, was shot and wounded by security forces during a street protest here and died in hospital, becoming the first to be killed outside of north Kashmir since the anti-government protests erupted on Saturday, July 9.

The incident took place in Batmaloo, a known separatist hub.

Fresh firing by security forces in Pulwama district of north Kashmir led to the death of Faiyaz Ahmed Mir. Elsewhere in Pulwama, four CRPF troopers were wounded when militants hurled grenades taking advantage of a street protest.

Four other deaths were reported earlier in the day.

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A mob overran a bullet-proof police vehicle and rolled it down into the Sutlej river at Sangam in Anantnag district, drowning its constable driver while other policemen fled the scene, official sources said.

Security forces shot dead two demonstrators at Litter in Pulwama after a mob took to the streets shouting anti-government and pro-freedom slogans, the sources said.

Irfan Ahmad Malik, 17, was also killed on Sunday in firing in Pulwama after a curfew-defying mob attacked the security forces, a police official said.

The latest fatalities took the death toll in two days of widespread clashes between protesters and security forces in the Kashmir Valley to 21-20 demonstrators and one policeman.

Kashmir Valley erupted in anger on Saturday after security forces shot dead Burhan Wani, a top leader of the Hizbul Mujahideen, along with two of his associates on Friday. His funeral was attended by thousands.

Burhan, Hizbul Mujahidin. Image source:indianexpress.com
Burhan, Hizbul Mujahidin. Image source:indianexpress.com

Most protests have taken place in the northern districts of Anantnag, Pulwama, Kulgam and Shopian. Wani hailed from Pulwama. In most places mobs have attacked police and paramilitary forces with stones, leading to tear-gassing and firing.

Taking advantage of the outnumbered security personnel, demonstrators on Sunday set fire to the Sub Divisional Police Officer’s office in Pahalgam, a court complex in Dooru and a police post in Qazigund in Kulgam.

On Saturday, July 9, mobs torched four police stations, two police pickets and a tehsildar’s office. There were two incidents of weapon snatching and torching of several vehicles of security forces.

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Senior officials said three policemen were missing following the violence and nearly 100 security personnel were injured in the street clashes which have crippled the Kashmir Valley and halted the Amarnath Yatra.

On Sunday, the Jammu and Kashmir government urged parents of young demonstrators to tell their wards not to take part in protests that were leading to civilian casualties.

Education Minister and government spokesman Naeem Akhtar also urged the separatist Hurriyat Conference to help restore calm in the Kashmir Valley, where a separatist campaign has left many thousands dead since 1989.

The government said it was also trying to arrange flights to fly out the thousands of tourists stranded in the valley due to the violence.

In New Delhi, union Home Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, offering all possible help from New Delhi.

Senior officials expressed the hope that the situation in Kashmir would return to normal soon.

Four demonstrators, Imtiyaz Ahmad Mandoo, Mashooq Ahmad and Safeer Ahmad (all from Anantnag) and Mohammmad Altaf Rather (Pulwama) who were wounded on Saturday died on Sunday. Eleven people were killed on Saturday.

At least 100 protesters were injured on Saturday. They suffered bullet, tear smoke and pellet injuries.

Wani was buried in his native Shariefabad village on Saturday where thousands gathered defying curfew restrictions to take part in his funeral prayers.

The separatists have called for a valley-wide shut down till Monday to protest against Wani’s killing. (IANS)

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About 60,000 Migrants are Dead or Missing in the Past 2 Decades

The International Organization for Migration estimates 5,400 migrants globally died or were recorded as missing in 2015

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Syrians and Iraqi Refugees. Image source: Wikimedia Commons
  • Majority of known deaths in the last two years have occurred in the Mediterranean region
  • The rate of death across the central Mediterranean route, we estimate is approximately one in 23 person
  • The Turkey-EU agreement intended to provide legal migrant routes to Europe has largely choked off the eastern Mediterranean Sea route from Turkey to Greece

A report from the  International Organization for Migration (IOM) found at least 60,000 migrants died or disappeared at sea or on land routes over the past two decades. IOM considers the real number to be much higher because many bodies are never found or identified.

The report said the majority of known deaths in the last two years have occurred in the Mediterranean region. The International Organization for Migration estimates 5,400 migrants globally died or were recorded as missing in 2015.

This year, IOM has documented more than 3,400 migrant deaths worldwide.  Director of IOM’S Global Migration Data Analysis Center Frank Laczko said  more than 80 percent of the deaths were people attempting to reach Europe by sea.

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“The rate of death across the central Mediterranean route, we estimate is approximately one in 23 persons,” he said. “The one in 23 persons who have tried to cross the central Mediterranean have died or are unaccounted for among migrants this year, which is a shocking statistic.”

The Turkey-EU agreement intended to provide legal migrant routes to Europe has largely choked off the eastern Mediterranean Sea route from Turkey to Greece. So most migrants are making the dangerous sea crossing from Libya to Italy. Laczko said the risk of death on the route has increased, but the actual volume of people crossing the Mediterranean has not increased as much as expected.

Refugees of the Vlora at the port of Bari (Italy) on 8 August 1991. Image source: Wikimedia Commons
Refugees of the Vlora at the port of Bari (Italy) on 8 August 1991. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

He told VOA there has not been a substantial increase in the number of people coming from Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria.

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“There has been fears that with the closing of the eastern Mediterranean route, we would see substantial increases in migrants turning to the central Mediterranean route,” he said. “It still seems to be predominantly dominated by migrants from sub-Saharan African countries.”

Laczko said about 10 percent are from Nigeria, another 10 percent from Eritrea and most of the remaining migrants are from West and East Africa. He noted migrant death rates in southeast Asia are as high as those in the Mediterranean, though the volume of people crossing the sea in that region is lower. (VOA)

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