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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

News in Brief

4 Killed in Ambush



MOSCOW (Reuters) -- Four soldiers were killed and another four wounded when they stumbled into a rebel ambush in a volatile mountainous region of Chechnya, officials at the local Interior Ministry said Monday.

"Four were killed and one soldier was taken hostage after a gun battle between the two sides," a spokesman for the regional Interior Ministry said, adding the group was ambushed in Chechnya's notorious mountainous region of Itum Kale.

"They had gone there to check out an explosion at the school," the spokesman said.




Train Death Toll Rises



ROSTOV-ON-DON, Southern Russia (AP) -- The death toll in the suicide bombing attack on a commuter train in the Stavropol region rose to 44, after two people died of injuries in the hospital, officials said Monday.

The reports came even as the southern region near Chechnya marked a day of mourning for the victims of the Friday rush hour attack that seemed timed to inflict a maximum number of injuries.

The bomb, believed strapped to a suicide attacker, blew the train car apart near the Yessentuki station.

President Vladimir Putin expressed his condolences to the families of the victims and said the attack was meant to sow panic and fear.

"No terrorism or treacherous atrocities can intimidate Russia's citizens or let the terrorists achieve their criminal objectives," Putin said in a letter sent to local authorities.




Adzharia Visa Rule



MOSCOW (MT) -- Visa rules for residents of the autonomous Georgian republic of Adzharia have been relaxed, the Foreign Ministry said Monday.

Along with the restive Georgian regions Abkhazia and South Ossetia, Adzharia has demonstratively moved closer to Moscow since popular protests brought down Eduard Shevardnadze's government last month.

The decision to give Adzharians special visa privileges could create new tensions between Russia and Georgia's transitional leadership.