Attacks on churches

15 police officers and 2 civilians killed in Dagestan

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24.06.2024 07:08

The death toll has risen following attacks by several gunmen on synagogues, Orthodox churches and a police station in two cities in the Russian republic of Dagestan. At least 15 police officers were killed, explained Governor Sergei Melikov in a video message. Two civilians also died - a Christian Orthodox priest and a security guard.

Unknown persons had opened fire in the places of worship and the police station on Sunday. This was followed by an anti-terror operation in which at least 15 officers lost their lives. "The emergency services and security forces reacted quickly, but unfortunately it was not without casualties," explained the mayor of Makhachkala, Yusup Umavov, on Monday night.

Smoke rises from a building in Makhachkala after the attacks. (Bild: APA/GOLOS DAGESTANA)
Smoke rises from a building in Makhachkala after the attacks.
(Bild: APA/AFP)

Several attackers also killed
The number of injured is also high: 16 people were admitted to hospitals. According to Melikov, six attackers were killed. The investigation committee reported that only five attackers had died.

The attacks on Sunday evening were carried out in parallel. Synagogues were attacked in the southern Russian city of Derbent and in the regional capital of Makhachkala, as reported by the Russian Jewish Congress. A synagogue in Derbent was set on fire and severely damaged. Two Orthodox churches were also targeted by the attackers. A police station in Makhachkala was targeted.

Makhachkala was sealed off
According to the authorities, the active phase of the anti-terror operation was declared over during the night. It is not clear whether all the perpetrators were caught. Makhachkala was sealed off due to the ongoing terrorist threat - the exits from the city were closed. Security forces in neighboring Russian republics were put on alert.

Governor Melikov sees the series of attacks as an attempt to destabilize the situation in the region. This is one of the poorest regions in Russia. Ten percent of Russian Muslims live here. 

This article has been automatically translated,
read the original article here.

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