Armed terrorists break into home of Chechnya’s parliament speaker

A group of four attackers wielding automatic weapons broke into the home of the speaker of the upper house of the Chechen parliament. The assailants seriously wounded the politician’s son and nephew, officials of the Interior Ministry said.

The legislator, Vakhid Mantsayev, was not at his home in the town of Shelkovskoye at the time of the attack late Monday, the ministry's Chechen regional department said. The attackers fled.

In another Chechen town, Tsotsin-Yurt in the eastern Kurchaloi region, police killed two alleged rebels who were holed up in a house and fired shots when police tried to arrest them, the ministry said.

Large-scale battles in Chechnya ended years ago but rebels continue to stage regular hit-and-run raids and land-mine explosions against federal forces and skirmish with local pro-Moscow police and paramilitary groups. Militant attacks have also become increasingly common in other republics in the North Caucasus.

A policeman and a woman who was in his car were found dead early Tuesday in the outskirts of the city of Makhachkala, in the Dagestan region bordering Chechnya, said the Interior Ministry's Dagestani department. The police officer appeared to have been hit in the head by a heavy object and then killed with a pistol shot to the head; the woman was likewise shot dead, the department said. Militants have frequently targeted police and security officials in Dagestan in recent years, the AP said.

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