Eight killed in Dagestan, Russia after ambush

Friday, May 14, 2010

At least eight people have been killed in the Russian province of Dagestan after an ambush by rebels, according to reports.

The incident occurred in the Sergokalinsky district last night about 80 kilometres (50 miles) south of Dagestan's capital, Makhachkala, when workers were being dispatched to fix a cell phone tower owned by the "Beeline" (Билайн) telecommunications company. The tower had earlier been damaged by bomb blasts by rebels. When driving up to the tower, the convoy of workers, accompanied by police officers, came under fire.

"According to preliminary information, an attack was made on a car with policemen. Eight people in the vehicle were killed. Other passengers received injuries or concussions," said a source with the security force of the Sergokalinsky district.

The Dagestan province frequently sees violence, blamed on gangs and separatists supposedly inspired by rebels in neighbouring Chechnya.