Suicide bomber kills policeman in Russia's Dagestan
A suicide bomber killed a policeman and wounded another in an attack in Russia's volatile Caucasus where security forces also killed four militants and busted a lab making bombs, officials said on Tuesday.
In Dagestan the bomber blew himself up during a routine document check in the city of Makhachkala, said a spokesman for the regional police.
"They came up to check his documents and he detonated the explosives," the spokesman told AFP.
Two civilians were hurt during the bombing, another police spokesman said.
The attack took place near local police headquarters in Makhachkala in Dagestan, which has experienced some of the deadliest violence in Russia's mostly Muslim southern periphery, the spokesman added, declining to provide further details.
In a separate incident, police and FSB security services clashed with insurgents in the nearby region of Kabardino-Balkaria killing four of them, Dmitry Pavlov, a spokesman for the Moscow-based National Anti-Terror Committee told AFP.
The militants, who were holed up in a residential building in the regional centre Nalchik, opened fire on authorities after they were ordered to lay down their weapons, regional investigators said.
At the scene security officials have discovered munition including an eight-kilo bomb and a makeshift laboratory to make explosives, the National Anti-Terror Committee said.
Residents of the high-rise had to be evacuated for the duration of the special operation and no-one was hurt, it added.
Attacks on officials in Kabardino-Balkaria, which is famed for its ski resorts, have been recently on the rise as the Caucasus violence spreads beyond the hotbed of the unrest in Chechnya, Dagestan and Ingushetia.
Last December, Anas Pshikhachev, Kabardino-Balkaria's top mufti, was attacked by two assailants near Nalchik and died of his wounds on the spot.
One of the militants killed Tuesday was suspected of being behind several murders, including that of the mufti, said Pavlov.
The skirmishes come after officials said last week they had foiled plans by religious extremists to carry out attacks during Victory Day celebrations in Russia.
The Kremlin calls the Caucasus unrest its biggest domestic problem but critics say authorities' regular pledges to root out the insurgency have largely led nowhere.
In January, a suicide bomber from the Caucasus killed 37 people and wounded dozens at Russia's biggest airport Domodedovo.
© 2011 AFP