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Sunday, 26 March, 2000, 23:25 GMT
Politician injured in Dagestan bomb

A deputy prime minister of Dagestan is reported to have been injured in a car bomb attack in the capital Makhachkala.

Police said the bomb ripped through an armoured car outside the Kavkaz hotel.

A spokesman for the Dagestan Federal Security Service said Vice-Premier Ilyas Umakhanov, and his driver were injured in the blast.

It was not immediately clear whether the two had been inside the jeep during the explosion

The bomb went off in the southern Russian republic just hours after voting ended in Russia's presidential election.

An investigation is under way, but it is unclear whether the explosion was connected to the election.

Chechnya

Police had been on alert around the country on election day to prevent Chechen terror attacks.

Dagestan borders onto Chechnya where Russian troops are continuing their campaign against Chechen separatists.

A wave of apartment bombings last autumn in Dagestan and Moscow killed about 300 people.

The Russian Government blamed the bombings on Chechen militants, and cited the blasts as a reason for sending troops into Chechnya, where fighting between federal forces and Islamic militants has been raging for six months.

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25 Aug 99 | Europe
Islamic roots in Dagestan
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