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ATYRAU, Kazakhstan -- Authorities in western Kazakhstan say they have shot dead a suspected religious extremist who was plotting acts of terrorism, RFE/RL's Kazakh Service reports.

Officials at the Atyrau Oblast prosecutor's office told RFE/RL that the man was a member of a religious extremist group and was shot dead in the city of Atyrau on August 29. They said he had been planning "acts of terrorism" in the region.

Shootings and explosions were heard after police and security forces cordoned off one district of the city, an RFE/RL correspondent reported.

There have been several such fatal clashes between local police and alleged members of religious extremist groups in Kazakhstan's western regions of Atyrau and Aqtobe in recent months.

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