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6 Policemen Killed, 14 Injured In Russia Suicide Bombing

PTI 06 Jan 2010, 16:30:29 PM IST

A suicide bomber on Wednesday blew up an explosives-laden car at a traffic police base in the restive Russian republic of Dagestan bordering Chechnya, killing at least six officers and injuring 14 others. 

The bomber drove his car to the traffic police base in Makhachkala, the capital of Daghestan, when policemen were lined up for the morning briefing. 

"The force of the explosion is estimated at 50-60 kg of TNT equivalent and the sound of blast could be heard in different parts of Makhachkala," a police spokesman told state-run Vesti news channel. The blast left six policemen dead and 14 wounded, the report said. 

However, the larger tragedy was averted as the entry was blocked by a police vehicle before the blast was triggered, the spokesman said. 

"Thanks to the precautionary measures taken since last August's similar attack on a police station in neighbouring Ingushetia, a larger loss of life could be averted," he said, adding the officers killed were those who blocked the terrorist's car. 

President Dmitry Medvedev, who is on a New Year holiday to the south Russian skiing resort of Sochi on the Black Sea coast, has ordered Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliyev and FSB security chief Alexander Bortnikov to take the situation under their personal control in Daghestan. 

The Caucasian republic of Daghestan has been a scene of terror strikes and killing of security officers, including the the police chief, last year, Vesti-FM radio said. PTI