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The Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) Thursday strongly condemned the killing of at least 10 people in Bihar by Maoists, saying that the act cannot be justified ‘by any means’.

Suhas Chakma, director of ACHR said: ‘The wanton killing of civilians cannot be justified under any circumstances and constitutes an act of terrorism. These killings expose the real face of the Maoists.’

According to police officials, more than 150 armed Maoists attacked Phulwaria village in Jamui, about 150 km from Patna, late Wednesday, and killed at least 10 villagers.

The guerrillas also set several houses in the village ablaze and abducted more than half a dozen villagers.

‘The mass murder of innocent civilians violates international humanitarian law, especially the Additional Protocol II to the Geneva Conventions relating to the Protection of Victims of Non-International Armed Conflicts,’ said Chakma, head of the organisation that works throughout Asia.

‘We urge the Maoists to release the kidnapped victims. Also, the Bihar government should clarify the alleged extrajudicial killing of eight Maoists by the police Feb 1. The Maoists had called a strike Feb 17 to denounce these killings,’ he added.

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