Russia arrests extremists in Caspian city: reports
Russian security forces have arrested two suspected Islamist extremists in the Caspian Sea city of Astrakhan close to the Northern Caucasus, reports said on Saturday.
The pair, who were found to possess illegal extremist literature and a grenade, were arrested late on Friday, the Interfax news agency quoted a security source as saying.
Astrakhan lies just to the east of the Northern Caucasus where the Kremlin is fighting an Islamist-tinged insurgency.
Interfax said that investigators suspected the pair of attempting to spread their ideas among the local population. It said they were supporters of the controversial international Islamic movement Tablighi Jamaat.
Long seen as a peaceful region despite its proximity to the Caucasus, Astrakhan has come under renewed scrutiny since the authorities claimed to have thwarted a militant attack during this year's May 9 World War II Victory Day events.
© 2011 AFP