RealNews

Official in Caucasus Who Opposed Radical Islamists Is Slain in Blast

Targeted sect draws suspicion in bombing that kills a minister of Russia’s Dagestan. In a fresh setback to Kremlin policy in the troubled Caucasus region, a top official in Dagestan known as an opponent of radical Islamic ideology was assassinated Wednesday, authorities said. Magomedsalikh Gusayev, Dagestan’s minister of ethnic policy, information and external relations, was killed after two attackers placed a magnetic bomb on the roof of his car as he was riding to work in the Russian republic’s capital, Makhachkala, police said. Dagestan, which is predominantly Muslim, borders the war-torn Russian republic of Chechnya. Gusayev, 52, had survived an assassination attempt in 2001, when he was injured by a bomb. In the years before and since, he led a fierce crackdown on a puritanical branch of Islam known as Wahhabism, which in the Caucasus Mountain region is associated with anti-Russian guerrillas. Full Story

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