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One police officer was killed and five others wounded
One police officer was killed and five others wounded in a clash with militants in southern Chechnya, a local police officer said on the telephone on Saturday.

The battle occurred on Friday when police were conducting a security sweep in the mountainous area near the village of Simsir in the Nozhai Yurt district and encountered a group of about 30 militants, a Chechen police source said.

There have been no reports on casualties among militants.

Chechnya, a largely Muslim republic in Russia's North Caucasus, was the site of two brutal separatist wars in the 1990s and early 2000s and is still plagued by violence, including militant attacks on local police and authorities, and federal forces.

In a separate encounter near Chechnya's capital, Grozny, police killed two rebels on Friday.

"During a security operation in Proletarskoye village police encountered two members of an illegal armed group, who opened fire when officers tried to arrest them. Police returned fire," a police source said, adding police officers were not hurt in the shooting.


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