The second week of January 2011 saw little let-up in apparent insurgency-related violence in the North Caucasus, with the largest number of reports coming out of Dagestan. On January 13, two men attacked a police unit in Dagestan’s capital Makhachkala, killing one policeman and wounding another. A passerby was also wounded in the attack. Following the attack, the two gunmen were chased down and killed. They were identified as Kamil Abdullaev and Murad Khairuev, both of them Makhachkala residents whom police suspect may have been among the perpetrators of the murder several days earlier of a woman in the Dagestani capital who practiced fortune-telling and folk-healing. Also on January 13, the head of the village of Verkhneye Ubeki in Dagestan’s Levashinsky district, Rabadan Rabadanov, was shot to death in the courtyard of his home (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 14).
The murder of the fortuneteller/folk-healer, a 48-year-old woman, took place on January 11 in Makhachkala. She was reportedly shot to death by two unidentified attackers at her home. On January 2, another folk-healer, Magomedsaid Temeyev, was shot and killed in the Dagestani capital. On January 11, police reported that among those who murdered Temeyev was a detained Makhachkala resident accused of involvement in an attack on a police unit on January 4 (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 11-12).
In other incidents in Dagestan on January 11, four militants were killed in a police operation in the city of Khasavyurt, while a police unit in Makhachkala came under fire after officers stopped a car for a document check. One policeman was wounded in the incident in the Dagestani capital and later died in the hospital, while one of the perpetrators of that attack, identified as Sergokala resident Usman Isaev, was also killed in the shootout (Interfax, January 11).
Also on January 11, three men in masks burst into a beer bar in Makhachkala, after which one of them opened fire with a pistol. The attackers then doused the establishment with gasoline and set it on fire. One patron was hospitalized with burns. On January 3, a grocery store in the Dagestani city of Khasavyurt was bombed. No one was hurt in that incident (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 11).
On January 10, unidentified gunmen fired on VAZ automobile near the village of Syrtych in Dagestan’s Derbent district. Two men traveling in the car were killed in the attack. Both men were local residents. That same day, a large improvised explosive device was discovered in a five-story apartment building in Makhachkala and defused (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 10).
On January 9, a group of policemen in Khasavyurt came under fire after they stopped a car and one of its passengers shot at them. The shooter and another passenger managed to escape. None of the policemen was hurt. That same day, one person was killed and two wounded in Makhachkala when an apparent business dispute escalated into a gunfight (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 9).
Meanwhile, Dagestan’s interior ministry announced on January 12 that Dzhafar Bikmaev, the son of the chairman of the Spiritual Board of Muslims of Southern Russia, Nail Bikmaev, was detained in Makhachkala on January 6 along with two other armed men. Authorities suspect the men of involvement in the republic’s “illegal armed formations” – i.e., insurgent groups (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 12).
In Chechnya, suspected insurgents attacked a group of cars ferrying commandos of the “Zapad” battalion of the Russian General Staff’s Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) on January 9. The incident occurred in the Leninsky district of Grozny, the republic’s capital. According to initial reports, three people were killed in the attack and six to eight were wounded. On January 11, Chechen law-enforcement sources identified two people killed in the attack – Adam Isaev, a 34-year-old commando, and Alikhan Sadulaev, a 49-year-old electrician and resident of the village of Shalazhi in Chechnya’s Urus-Martan district – and reported that one of the attackers was also killed in the incident. Among those wounded in the attack was Lieutenant-Colonel Bislan Elimkhanov, commander of the “Zapad” battalion, and two civilian passersby (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 11).
In Ingushetia, an officer of the Federal Security Service (FSB) branch in the republic’s Malgobek district was wounded on January 13 when his car came under fire at the entrance to the city of Nazran near Ingushetia’s administrative border with North Ossetia (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 13).
A powerful homemade explosive device was discovered near a hospital in the village of Ordzhonikidzevskaya in Ingushetia’s Sunzha district on January 8. The bomb was defused (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 8).
In Kabardino-Balkaria, a well-known folk-healer, Amerbi Afuanov, was shot to death outside his home in the village of Kenzh on January 11 (www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, January 8).