Moscow, 10 August (RFE/RL) - Fighting between Russian forces and
suspected Islamic rebels in Dagestan has sent 4,000 refugees fleeing to the capital of Makhachkala. Several hundred insurgents crossed into Dagestan from Chechnya on Saturday and are said to have surrounded four villages near the border. Officials in Moscow say insurgent Chechen warlord Shamil Basaev is leading the rebels, but Chechen officials deny that any armed group has crossed their border into Dagestan.
Dagestan's border service reported no fighting overnight between government forces and the suspected Islamic rebels, and said government troops and police are reinforcing units in a bid to drive the rebels out.