Police seize 600 Maoist rockets, launchers in Andhra

HYDERABAD, India (Reuters) - Police seized around 600 rockets and 12 launchers in Andhra Pradesh after a raid on a Maoist arms depot, a senior police officer said on Friday. They also found equipment used to make landmines during the overnight swoop deep in the forests of Mahbubnagar, a western district of Andhra Pradesh, one of the worst-affected by Maoist violence.


"This is the biggest arms haul in recent years," K. Srinivas Reddy, Mahbubnagar district police chief, told Reuters by phone.

In the neighbouring state of Chhattisgarh, Maoist rebels kidnapped two policemen late on Thursday, leading to a massive search operation, police said.

Maoist rebels operate across large swathes of east, south and central India and human rights groups say hundreds have been killed in violence between the guerrillas and security forces and anti-Maoist vigilantes this year.

The Maoists claim to fight for India's impoverished peasants and landless labourers and use landmines and rockets to target police posts and vehicles.

(Additional reporting by Sujeet Kumar in RAIPUR)

Von: 08.09.2006, Reuters India

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