Investigators: 2 killed, 5 wounded in shooting at market in Russian city of Samara

Saturday, July 24, 2010

2 killed, 5 hurt in Russian market shooting

MOSCOW — Gunmen opened fire on security guards at a provincial food market in the southern Russian city of Samara on Saturday, killing at least two and wounding at least five other people, investigators said.

At least six attackers arrived at the market in three cars and opened fire before fleeing, Russia’s Investigative Committee said in a statement.

Five people were hospitalized, it said.

Even the smallest of Russian enterprises employs security guards, who are often in the line of fire when business disputes turn violent. State television reported the Samara market was changing ownership.

Russian news agencies earlier reported 14 had been hurt in the shooting.

Meanwhile, in the country’s volatile North Caucasus region — where such violence is part of daily life — three soldiers in Dagestan were killed when assailants attacked their convoy in a drive-by shooting, according to police spokesman Vyacheslav Gasanov.

Around the same time, the top official in a village in Dagestan’s Kizlyarsky region was in a separate attack, Gasanov said.

The North Caucasus suffers from a militant Islamist insurgency seeking separatism from Russia. Human rights activists say many of their attacks are spurred by kidnappings, torture and extra-judicial killings of criminal suspects and civilians by the authorities, who deny such allegations. Some of the violence is also attributed to criminality and business disputes.

In another North Caucasus province, Ingushetia, a well-known local businessman shot dead a university official to whom he was related, the state ITAR-Tass news agency cited police as saying.

Ruslan Malsagov, who headed the Ingushetia State University’s economics department, was killed outside his home in the province’s largest city, Nazran, by entrepreneur Magomed Malsagov, Tass reported. The attacker was killed along with two other people — also relatives — in a shootout when police cornered him, the report said.


Associated Press writer Arsen Mollayev contributed to this report from Makhachkala, Russia.

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