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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Rebel Snipers Kill 2 Policemen in Chechnya

Chechen rebels fired on a military vehicle from the cover of a forest west of Grozny on Tuesday, killing two policemen and injuring four, Itar-Tass reported.

In a separate attack, a mine blast injured several servicemen in an armored personnel carrier on a road linking Grozny and the province’s chaotic southern hills, news agencies reported.

The assaults came after a night of gunfire across the war-shattered region.

Moscow says the rebels have been reduced to "diversionary and terrorist acts" since their numbers have been sharply reduced in the 11-month war.

But the rebels insist they are fitter than ever and winning a psychological battle against Russian troops consisting largely of young conscripts.

"The enemy has suffered a psychological breakdown," the rebel web site quoted guerrilla leader Shamil Basayev as saying. "Practically everywhere in Chechnya, we are carrying out relentless mine warfare against the aggressors."

Basayev’s comments came a day after the Kremlin claimed that rebels were beginning to surrender as they realized the "futility" of their cause, following Russian military reports that a senior rebel commander had given himself up.

Itar-Tass said Tuesday that authorities were not planning to charge Ibragim Khultygov for "membership in an illegally armed group" as he had surrendered voluntarily.