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Ambush was very unfortunate: Manipur CM

Manipur Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh today expressed sorrow over the loss of lives of 18 Army personnel in the ambush at Chandel and stressed that his government wanted to crush insurgency in the state.

"The ambush by militants at Chandel was very unfortunate," he said paying floral tribute to the 18 Army personnel killed in the ambush at Paraolong on Thursday.

Manipur, he said, would work together with Army and para military forces to curb insurgency in the state.

The chief minister said he would approach the government of neighbouring Myanmar through the Centre requesting it not to harbour any outfit of the north-east in that country.

He along with Governor Syed Ahmed, Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam and Lt Gen Bipin Rawat of GOC 3 Corp paid floral tribute to the army personnel killed in the ambush yesterday.

Lt Gen Bipin Rawat told newsmen present at Imphal airport, where the floral tribute was paid, that Army operation against the insurgents involved in the attack was on but none was arrested as yet.

Replying to a question, he said there was no intelligence lapse in the working of the Army. "Intelligence inputs keep coming regularly and accordingly militants are arrested daily."

He also expressed doubts over the involvement of local people in the ambush.

Later the bodies of the slain army personnel were airlifted to their respective states to be handed over to their families, Army sources said.