Officials: Maoist Landmine Kills 15 Police in Central India

Posted March 27th, 2012 at 8:25 am (UTC-5)
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Indian officials say a landmine planted by suspected Maoist rebels has killed at least 15 police officers and wounded 13 others in the western state of Maharashtra.

The attack occurred Tuesday about 1,000 kilometers east of India's financial hub, Mumbai. The mine exploded in a densely forested area when police drove by in a vehicle.

Earlier this month, Maoists abducted two Italians — in what is believed to be the first kidnapping of foreigners in the conflict — and a local Indian politician. The separate abductions occurred in the eastern state of Orissa. On Sunday, rebels released one of the Italians.

Indian Maoist rebels say they are fighting for the rights of poor farmers. The government says their guerrilla attacks and kidnappings make them the biggest threat to India's security.