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Indian priest killed in rebel gunfight

A Catholic priest was killed and a nun who was accompanying him barely escaped when the ambulance in which they were travelling was caught in a crossfire between armed rebels and police in India's northern Uttar Pradesh state.

Catholic World News repaorts that Fr J.B. Crasta of the Allahabad diocese was at the wheels of the ambulance, which was stopped at a roadblock manned by a Maoist rebel group. When the guerrillas stopped a police patrol as well, there was an exchange of gunfire, and the priest was killed. His assistant, Sister Anesta, fled into the surrounding jungle and avoided the gunfire.

Fr Donald de Souza, a spokesman for the Indian bishops' conference, reported that Father Crasta was aware of the guerrilla roadblocks in the region, but took the risk of passing that route in response to an emergency call for medical help.