Coordinated attacks on police in Chechnya kill one officer

A police officer died in a series of at least four coordinated attacks on police in Russia’s volatile Chechnya region on Monday.

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A shootout between police and assailants on a street in the capital of Grozny led to the death of the police officer. In another clash, a man was shot after he struck a traffic officer with his car. Between the two attacks, five police officers and two bystanders were injured. Security camera footage from the second encounter showed a vehicle running over men in uniform.

Police also reported that two assailants with knives attacked a police station in Shali, in Chechnya’s rural Shalinsky District. Two officers were injured and the attackers were shot. A suicide bomber attacked traffic officers in Shalinsky’s Mesker-Yurt village but failed to kill anyone, including himself, the Latvian-based news website Meduza reported.

Chechen Republic chief Ramzan Kadyrov, dismissed the attacks as an attempt to disrupt the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, which begins on Monday.

“A group of young people have made an attempt to commit high-profile crimes today,” Kadyrov said on Monday. “The main purpose today is to create an illusion that there are some forces capable of organizing armed actions and terrorist attacks. There is no doubt that the task was to darken this holiday, to cause a broad public response and to prevent residents of Chechnya from celebrating Eid al-Adha.”

By Ed Adamczyk