Asia

Fierce gunbattle in Indian Kashmir kills 3 combatants

  • Indian policemen pay homage during the wreath-laying ceremony of their colleague Manzoor Ahmad Naik at the police headquarters of Srinagar, India, Sunday, March 5, 2017. Anti-India protests erupted in Indian-controlled Kashmir following a fierce gunbattle in which two rebels and the counterinsurgency policeman have been killed, police said Sunday.(AP Photo/Mukhtar Khan)

    Indian policemen pay homage during the wreath-laying ceremony of their colleague Manzoor Ahmad Naik at the police headquarters of Srinagar, India, Sunday, March 5, 2017. Anti-India protests erupted in Indian-controlled Kashmir following a fierce gunbattle in which two rebels and the counterinsurgency policeman have been killed, police said Sunday.(AP Photo/Mukhtar Khan)  (The Associated Press)

  • A senior Indian police officer lays wreath on the coffin containing the body of his colleague Manzoor Ahmad Naik at the police headquarters of Srinagar, India, Sunday, March 5, 2017. Anti-India protests erupted in Indian-controlled Kashmir following a fierce gunbattle in which two rebels and the counterinsurgency policeman have been killed, police said Sunday. (AP Photo/Mukhtar Khan)

    A senior Indian police officer lays wreath on the coffin containing the body of his colleague Manzoor Ahmad Naik at the police headquarters of Srinagar, India, Sunday, March 5, 2017. Anti-India protests erupted in Indian-controlled Kashmir following a fierce gunbattle in which two rebels and the counterinsurgency policeman have been killed, police said Sunday. (AP Photo/Mukhtar Khan)  (The Associated Press)

  • Indian police officers carry a coffin containing the body their colleague Manzoor Ahmad Naik during the wreath-laying ceremony at the police headquarters of Srinagar, India, Sunday, March 5, 2017. Anti-India protests erupted in Indian-controlled Kashmir following a fierce gunbattle in which two rebels and the counterinsurgency policeman have been killed, police said Sunday.(AP Photo/Mukhtar Khan)

    Indian police officers carry a coffin containing the body their colleague Manzoor Ahmad Naik during the wreath-laying ceremony at the police headquarters of Srinagar, India, Sunday, March 5, 2017. Anti-India protests erupted in Indian-controlled Kashmir following a fierce gunbattle in which two rebels and the counterinsurgency policeman have been killed, police said Sunday.(AP Photo/Mukhtar Khan)  (The Associated Press)

Police say anti-India protests have erupted in Indian-controlled Kashmir following a fierce gunbattle in which two rebels and a counterinsurgency policeman have been killed.

Police chief S.P. Vaid said Sunday that government forces, acting on a tip, encircled a civilian home in southern Tral area overnight, triggering the gunfight. He says the fighting lasted overnight until early Sunday.

As the fighting raged, clashes erupted between government forces and villagers who tried to march to the site of the fighting in solidarity with militants.

Rivals India and Pakistan each administer a portion of Kashmir, but both claim the disputed Himalayan territory in its entirety.

Rebel groups in Kashmir have been fighting for either independence or a merger with Pakistan since 1989.