Naxals kill 13 hostages in Chhattisgarh
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Naxals kill 13 hostages in Chhattisgarh

The extremists slit the throats of 13 of 40 villagers abducted earlier this week.

india Updated: Apr 29, 2006 16:01 IST

Maoist rebels slit the throats of 13 of 40 tribal villagers abducted earlier this week in Chhattisgarh, police said on Saturday.

The killings are the latest in a series in some of the dozen or so states where Maoist extremists operate.

The bodies were found deep in the forest 22 km from a Government-run relief camp which was near the spot where the group had been taken hostage at gunpoint in revolt-hit Dantewada district.

"The bodies had multiple wounds and rebels killed them by slitting their throats," district police chief Praveer Das said.

On Friday, police in Chhattisgarh found two bullet ridden bodies of men, part of the group who had been seized, taking the toll from the kidnapping to 15.

The tribals had been returning to Dornpal relief camp in Dantewada district 550 km south of the state capital Raipur.

Maoist rebels, who claim to fight for India's poor peasants and landless labourers, suspect many villagers at government relief camps to be part of a state-backed anti-Maoist group.

The rebel campaign -- being fought across huge swathes of southern, central and eastern India - has killed at least 135 people, mostly civilians, in Chhattisgarh since January including the latest fatalities.

In violence this week, police shot dead 11 Maoists on Friday in Andhra Pradesh, which neighbours Chhattisgarh, while 13 people were killed when rebels set off a landmine in Chhattisgarh under a vehicle, probably mistaking it for a police jeep.

First Published: Apr 29, 2006 12:38 IST