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Armed Maoists kill 75 police in India

Rebel group ambushes government security forces in an escalation of the ongoing insurgency.

April 7, 2010 4:47 by

At least 75 soldiers and policemen in India are reported killed in one of the deadliest attacks in years by the armed Maoist group, also known as the Naxalites. Fighters Tuesday ambushed a bus in a remote region of India’s Dantewada district, as it carried members of India’s Central Reserve Police Force returning from patrol.

Rescuers approaching the scene were subsequently ambushed, as well.

The Maoists reportedly demand the release from jail of four senior leaders, as well as an end to the offensive, prior to any agreement to negotiate.

The rebels are believed to have as many as 8,000 fighters in India and government sources claim the movement extorts an estimated $300 million annually from companies, as reported Tuesday by Al Jazeera.

India’s Prime Minister calls the Maoists a potent threat to India’s civil security, terming them ‘the biggest security challenge to India since independence.”

The Naxalites allege that the Indian state is a dictatorship, waging an ongoing terror campaign against its citizenry. The group claims they are fighting for the rights of India’s rural poor.

A reported 2,000 people are estimated deed in related violence over the past few years, as the armed group has waged an insurgency against the Indian government.

Source: Al Jazeera English

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