RUSSIA: Al-Qaeda-linked MUSLIM terror attack

MUSLIM gunmen, suicide bomber attack Chechen parliament and ministry building.

MSNBC GROZNY, Russia — An insurgent attack on the parliament complex in the volatile Chechnya region left four assailants and at least two others dead, a Russian police spokesman said Tuesday. Ramzan Bekkhoyev said there were at least four militants, one of whom blew himself up, killing two security guards at the complex in Grozny, the provincial capital.

Russian news agencies earlier reported the deaths of police, saying insurgents set off an explosive device at the entrance of parliament, while two others ran into the building, sparking a shootout with law enforcement.

The Kremlin is struggling to contain a growing Islamist insurgency in the North Caucasus, a strip of impoverished, mainly Muslim provinces along predominantly Orthodox Christian Russia’s southern border. Russia fought two wars with Chechen separatists in the 1990s.

The Kremlin had declared victory in its battle with Chechen separatists, but a wave of shootings and bombings over recent months shows Moscow has failed to tame the growing insurgency. In August a shootout between Kadyrov’s security service officers and suspected insurgency left 19 people dead, including 5 civilians, in his home village of Tsentoroi, raising fears of a reviving insurgency.