Truck Bomb in Russia’s Caucasus Kills 19

MOSCOW (RPRN) 8/17/2009–Police in Russia’s volatile North Caucasus region say at least 19 people were killed and about 70 were wounded in the region’s deadliest bombing in months.

Local officials in Ingushetia say a truck bomb exploded Monday at police headquarters in the city of Nazran. They say the truck rammed through the gates of the compound and exploded as police officers were lining up for their morning roll call.

Law enforcement said the bomb included more than 20 kilograms of explosives and severely damaged cars and buildings in the area. At least nine of the wounded are children.

Government forces have battled separatists in Ingushetia, Chechnya and other parts of southern Russia since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991. Deadly clashes remain common in the country’s restive southern republics.

A week ago, militants in Dagestan opened fire on police who had stopped their car, killing at least two officers and wounding one other. A police spokesman there said officers returned fire and killed one militant.

And earlier this month, Russian officials say militants in Chechnya ambushed several police vehicles as they patrolled the area, killing at least five officers and wounding six others.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.