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Police, rebels clash in Russia; 12 dead

Russian tr0oops on Friday stormed two houses in southern Russia where alleged militants were holed up.

india Updated: Feb 10, 2006 18:25 IST

Troops on Friday stormed two houses in southern Russia where alleged militants were holed up, killing eight suspects, the regional Interior Ministry said.

A police officer who had gone missing during the first day of fighting on Thursday was found dead, bringing the toll among police to four, said Roman Shchekotin, spokesman for the southern regional office of the Russian Interior Ministry.

Police, acting on a tip off, hunted down the group in Tukui-Mekteb, a village in the southern Stavropol region, about 40 kilometres north of the border with Chechnya. The suspected militants refused to surrender.

State-controlled Channel One television said that firing and explosions had continued into the early hours today, and that residents of the village were evacuated at dawn.

It showed about a dozen women, some draped in blankets, walking quickly away, one carrying a baby.

First Published: Feb 10, 2006 18:25 IST