Manipur violence: 13 killed in gunfight in border village

Security forces carrying out search operations in vulnerable areas of Imphal. Photo: X/@manipur_police

Imphal: At least 13 people, suspected to be the cadres of the outlawed PLA terror group, were killed after a gunfight in a remote border village of Manipur's Tengnoupal district on Monday, officials said here.

As soon as the information was shared with police, teams were dispatched to Leithu village, 15 km from the Myanmar border, where they found bodies of at least 13 people, the officials said.

Quoting some witnesses, the officials said that a gunfight had broken out on Monday noon after which the bodies had been found.

Initial reports suggest that these could be cadres of the Valley-based insurgent group People's Liberation Army, whose ban under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act was extended recently.
However, the officials said that no arms or ammunition was found near the bodies.

"A group of militants on their way to Myanmar were ambushed by another group of insurgents dominant in the area," an official in the hill district said. The areas around the place where the incident occurred are dominated by tribal people.

They said probably a part of the group could have escaped to Myanmar where they got their arms training before being sent back to Manipur.

The area has remained peaceful and was not touched by the ethnic conflict that rocked Manipur state on May 4. More than 180 people have been killed in the unrest.

Tengnoupal district shares a porous border with Myanmar. The village has no proper road connection and is often used by insurgent groups to cross over to Myanmar.

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