Suspected rebels attack police post in Indian-held Kashmir, killing civilian and policeman

Suspected rebels opened fire at a police post in the Indian-controlled portion of Kashmir on Tuesday, killing a police constable and a civilian, authorities said.

Two militants riding a motorcycle shot at a sentry post outside a shrine in the northwestern village of Tujjar Sharief and took away the constable's rifle and killed him, said Garib Das, a senior police officer.

A 70-year-old man in a wheelchair also was shot and killed, Das said.

Troops cordoned off the area and are investigating the attack, he said.

Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan. Both claim it in its entirety and have fought two wars over the region since they won independence from Britain in 1947.

Violence by anti-India rebels has escalated in recent weeks.

India accuses Pakistan of arming the rebels, who have been fighting since 1989 for Kashmir's independence or its merger with Pakistan, a charge Islamabad denies. More than 68,000 people have been killed in the fighting over the past 2 1/2 decades.