Indian army admits 'mistake' in killing two teenagers

Indian army admits 'mistake' in killing two teenagers
Kashmiri Muslim women mourn during the funeral of two civilians shot dead by soldiers, in Srinagar on November 4, 2014.

NEW DELHI - The Indian Army has admitted it made a mistake in shooting dead two teenagers in restive Indian-administered Kashmir this week, a rare public admission of fault by the armed forces.

The teenagers died after soldiers fired at a car on the outskirts of Srinagar on Monday, while another youngster was critically wounded.

"We take responsibility for the death of the two boys in Kashmir," the chief of the army's northern command, D.S. Hooda, told reporters in Srinagar late Friday in televised remarks.

"We admit a mistake was made... there was some information about a white car with terrorists. Obviously, the identity was mistaken in this case," the lieutenant general added.

Hooda promised an investigation into the deaths that would be conducted employing "the highest standard of transparency".

Kashmir has been divided between India and Pakistan since independence from British colonial rule in 1947, but both claim the scenic Himalayan region in full.

Tens of thousands of people, most of them civilians, have died in fighting between Indian forces and a dozen rebel groups seeking independence or a merger of the territory with Pakistan.

Kashmir is still reeling from devastating floods in September that killed more than 200 people and destroyed public infrastructure and businesses.

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