MAKHACHKALA, Russia – Russian authorities say two suspected militants and two law enforcement officers have been killed in a skirmish in the volatile southern province of Dagestan.
The National Anti-terrorism Committee’s spokesman, Alexander Polyakov, said the two suspects holed up in a building in the town of Khasavyurt near Chechnya on Monday. They refused to surrender and died in a gunbattle that also left two law enforcement agents dead.
Dagestan, a mostly Muslim region located between Chechnya and the Caspian Sea, has been a breeding ground for Islamic militants who mount regular attacks on police and officials. Some of the militants have sworn allegiance to the Islamic State group.
Russia fought two wars against separatists in the neighboring province of Chechnya after the 1991 breakup of the Soviet Union.