Russia's airborne troops chief injured in car crash

30th October 2010, Comments 0 comments

The commander-in-chief of Russia's airborne troops, Vladimir Shamanov, was injured Saturday in a car crash in which his official driver died, Russian news agencies reported.

Shamanov's official BMW car collided with a lorry in the Tula region to the south of Moscow, killing the driver and injuring Shamanov and an air force colonel, the Interfax news agency reported, citing the defence ministry.

General-lieutenant Shamanov, 53, "received moderately severe injuries that are not life-threatening" and will be transported to a military hospital in Moscow, a defence ministry spokesman told the agency.

Shamanov commanded Russian troops in the brief Russia-Georgia war in August 2008 and has led Russia's elite airborne troops, since 2009.

The decorated veteran of the two Chechen wars has been criticised by international human rights organisations for his role in alleged human rights abuses and civilian casualties.

© 2010 AFP

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