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Grenade kills one, hurts 12 in Kashmir

A grenade thought to be thrown by an Islamic militant missed its paramilitary target in India-controlled Kashmir and exploded on a street Thursday, killing at least one civilian and wounding 12 more, police said.

The grenade was thrown at a paramilitary bunker in Batmalloo, a suburb of Srinagar in the northern Jammu-Kashmir state, a local police officer told the Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

Police suspect Islamic militants, who are seeking independence for the Muslim-majority region or its merger with Muslim Pakistan, he said.

The injured, including one with severe wounds from fragments, were hospitalized in Srinagar.

No group claimed responsibility for the attack, which occurred as military attaches from 14 countries _ including the United States, Britain and Japan _ met with defense and civil authorities in Jammu-Kashmir. They were finishing a three-day tour.

India accuses Pakistan of funding and arming nearly a dozen separatist militant groups and helping them cross the frontier into India to launch attacks.

Pakistan says it extends only moral and diplomatic support to "freedom fighters."

Powell to urge peace

WASHINGTON _ When Secretary of State Colin Powell travels to India and Pakistan this weekend, he will implore leaders to build on recent commitments that helped ease the threat of war over Kashmir.

After leaving Washington today, Powell has meetings planned in New Delhi on Saturday and in Islamabad on Sunday.

Powell said he will discuss the possibility of an India-Pakistan dialogue on Kashmir.

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