Gunmen Attack Synagogue and Church in Dagestan: Priest and Policeman Killed

Crime, Shooting

A priest and a policeman were killed in attacks on a synagogue and a church in Derbent, Dagestan. The coordinated assault left several injured, and authorities are investigating.

Russia, Bollywood Fever: A priest and a policeman have been killed after gunmen armed with automatic weapons attacked a synagogue and a church on Sunday evening in the city of Derbent, in Russia’s southernmost Dagestan province.

The attack on the church resulted in the death of a priest, identified as Father Nikolay, according to Dagestan Public Monitoring Commission Chairman Shamil Khadulaev. “According to the information I received, Father Nikolay was killed in the Church in Derbent, they slit his throat. He was 66 years old and very ill,” Khadulaev said. A security guard at the church, armed only with a pistol, was also shot. Additional priests have locked themselves in the church and are waiting for help, Khadulaev added.

Meanwhile, the synagogue is now on fire with large flames and plumes of smoke billowing heavily out of a series of windows on at least one floor of the structure. At least one police officer was killed and another injured in the attacks, according to preliminary reports from the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Dagestan duty officer. Officials are working to clarify details on casualties and the status of the perpetrators.

In what appears to be a coordinated attack that took place around the same time, a police traffic post in Makhachkala, Dagestan, also came under fire. At least one police officer was injured in the attack in Makhachkala, according to the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

The head of the Dagestan Republic, Sergey Melikov, issued a message on Telegram saying that “unknown persons made attempts to destabilize the social situation. Dagestan police officers stood in their way. According to preliminary information, there are victims among them.” Melikov said the identities of the attackers are being established, an operational headquarters has been set up, and a plan for operation “Interception” is underway.

He urged the public to remain calm, saying, “Panic and fear are what they were counting on. They won’t get this from Dagestanis!”

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