The Indian army says six suspected rebels and a soldier have been killed in two separate gunbattles in Indian-controlled Kashmir.

Army spokesman Col. Nitin N. Joshi says Friday that four militants and a soldier were killed in two days of fierce fighting near the heavily militarized line of control dividing the disputed Himalayan region between India and Pakistan.

There was no independent confirmation. No rebel group fighting Indian rule immediately issued a statement.

Joshi said two other rebels were killed in western Khonshipora village Friday after soldiers and police launched a joint operation on a specific tip, leading to exchange of gunfire.

Rebels have been fighting against Indian rule since 1989. More than 68,000 people have been killed in the uprising and Indian military crackdown.