PTI

At least nine people were killed and 10 injured when suspected militants attacked a village in the Khamenlok area of ethnic-strife hit Manipur, police said on Wednesday.

The militants armed with sophisticated weapons surrounded the villagers of the Khamelok area bordering Imphal East district and Kangpoki district and launched the attack at around 1 am, the police said.

The injured have been admitted to Imphal hospital, they said.

The area lies along the borders of the Meitei-dominated Imphal East district and tribal-majority Kangpokpi district.

On Monday night nine people were injured in a gunfight in the Khamenlok area in exchange of fire between militants and village volunteers.

The security forces also exchanged fire with Kuki militants at Phougakchao Ikhai in Bishnupur district on Tuesday, they said.

The Kuki militants were trying to make bunkers close to Meitei localities when they were challenged by security forces resulting in the exchange of fire.

Meanwhile, the district authorities have cut short the curfew relaxation hours from the usual 5 am to 6 pm in Imphal East and Imphal West to 5 am to 9 am.

At least 100 people lost their lives and 310 others were injured in the ethnic violence between Meitei and Kuki community people in Manipur that broke out a month ago. Army and para-military personnel were deployed to restore peace in the state.

Curfew remains in force in 11 of the 16 districts of Manipur, while internet services are suspended in the entire northeastern state.

Clashes first broke out on May 3 after a 'Tribal Solidarity March' was organised in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community's demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.

Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur's population and live mostly in the Imphal Valley.

Tribals Nagas and Kukis constitute another 40 per cent of the population and reside in the hill districts.

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