Asia

Maoist rebel attack kills 11 paramilitary soldiers in India

Police say at least 11 paramilitary soldiers have been shot and killed by Maoist rebels in an ambush in central India.

Top police officer R.K. Vij says the attack Saturday also left three soldiers wounded in the rebel-infested Sukma forest area in Chattisgarh state.

Vij says it's not clear if any rebels were killed or injured when the Central Reserve Police Force soldiers returned fire.

The insurgents, who say they are inspired by Chinese revolutionary leader Mao Zedong, have been fighting for more than three decades in central and eastern India, staging hit-and-run attacks to press their demand for a greater share of wealth and more jobs for farmers and the poor.

According to the Home Ministry, they operate in 20 of India's 29 states and have thousands of fighters.