According to a military spokesman for India’s Ministry of Defense, a group of unknown insurgents began launching rockets and setting off other explosives during an ambush in Manipur, killing 20 soldiers. The city has experienced multiple other attacks over the years from armed insurgents, which are a mix of several different tribal groups.
In the most recent attack, 11 soldiers were injured in one of the most violent attack in the region in years, targeting an army convoy traveling through Imphal, near Myanmar. Officials from the Ministry of Defense stated they have yet to identity the insurgents, but are working to investigate the attack. Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar took to Twitter to voice his disgust about the ambush, saying their actions were, “cowardly.”
Indian military forces have attempted to isolate the chaos in the region, but have struggled to take back control of the area. Under the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), soldiers have been granted the power to shoot-to-kill in areas where ambushes and other activities from insurgents are common. Last year, over 450 people were killed in similar fights throughout the region, according to the South Asian Terrorism Portal.
By Alex Lemieux
Reuters: At Least 20 Troops Killed in an Ambush in Manipur
Photo Courtesy of José Antonio Morcillo Valenciano’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License