Car bomb in Caucasus wounds minister, kills driver

Bekmurza Bekmurzayev was taken to hospital suffering from shock.

Makhachkala: A senior official in the province of Dagestan in Russia`s Caucasus was wounded on Saturday and his driver killed by a bomb planted in their car, a police spokesman said.

Bekmurza Bekmurzayev, a minister in charge of national, religious and foreign affairs in Dagestan`s government, was taken to hospital suffering from shock. His bodyguard was also injured by the bomb.

"The minister left the car without exterior help," a witness said. A badly burned body was at the scene, another witness said.

Dagestan, an ethnically-mixed, mainly-Muslim region on the Caspian Sea, has overtaken other volatile southern provinces, including neighbouring Chechnya, to become the worst-hit by Islamist violence in recent months.

Authorities blame most of the attacks on Islamic militants, but some violence is connected to organised crime and to clan rivalries. Most Islamic militants are separatists.

Bureau Report

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