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Russian forces launch new raids in Caucasus - six dead.

Moscow, Shawwal 10, 1432, Sep 8, 2011, SPA -- Six people were killed and at least three injured on Thursday as the Russian military launched new raids on suspected insurgents in the volatile Caucasus region, according to media reports, according to dpa.

In early morning operations, special forces troops shot dead two suspected insurgents in two separate firefights, while a third rebel fighter used explosives to blow up himself when troops moved in, Interfax reported citing a government spokesman.

A fourth suspected insurgent was reported captured. Explosives, machine guns, grenade launchers, grenades and other munitions were found in the raids on four separate houses, all of which were in villages of the territory Ingushetia, said Nikolai Sintsov, a spokesman for the National Anti-Terrorist Committee.

Troops were raiding the residences of suspected insurgents in the neighbouring territories Chechnya and Bakardino-Balakaria on Thursday, and martial law was in effect in some villages, Sintsov said.

In the province of Dagestan, a pro-Kremlin government official died of injuries sustained in an attack on Wednesday evening.

Suspected insurgents opened fire on Gadzhibutt Alunkachaev and a friend as they exited a barber in the capital Makhachkala. The friend died on the scene, Interfax reported.

In Kabardino-Balkaria, a pedestrian was killed and two police officers sustained gunshot wounds when suspected insurgents opened fire with automatic weapons, Interfax reported.

A police officer was injured in a gun attack in a Kabardino-Balkaria village, according to Interfax.

Russia has more than 100,000 troops stationed in the Caucasus, where it has been battling a long-running insurgency. Russian forces frequently raid homes and sweep forests and mountains in an effort to hunt down anti-government fighters.

Insurgents have fought back with ambushes and assassinations of local government officials.

--SPA 14:50 LOCAL TIME 11:50 GMT

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Publication:Saudi Press Agency (SPA)
Date:Sep 8, 2011
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