Police forces took a home by storm in the Southern Russian region Dagestan on Monday, killing two suspected militants. Authorities said that it was the latest of many such sieges in this violence-plagued, mostly Muslim province.
Heavily armed police stormed the building in a village near neighboring Chechnya after hitting it with a barrage of ammunition, regional Interior Ministry spokeswoman Anzhela Martirosova said.
She said they opened fire after suspected militants holed up inside responded to surrender demands with gunfire. Two police officers were injured during the operation, the ministry said.
Operations in which police besiege alleged militants are common in Dagestan and other largely Muslim provinces in Russia's North Caucasus, an ethnically mixed area where poverty, corruption and persecution of Muslims perceived as radical has fueled anger at the authorities.
In Ingushetia, another province bordering Chechnya, unidentified gunmen fatally shot an officer from a police anti-organized crime unit in a pre-dawn attack outside his home, regional Interior Ministry spokesman Nazir Yevloyev said.
Both Ingushetia and Dagestan are plagued by attacks on law enforcement authorities and other violence. Some of the bloodshed stems from internal disputes and some is related to more than a decade of conflict between Russian authorities and separatist rebels in Chechnya.