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Three Get Life In Prison For Killing Of Muslim Leader In Daghestan

The top court in Russia's Daghestan region on April 21 sentenced three men to life in prison for helping a female suicide bomber kill an influential moderate Muslim leader in 2012.

A jury on April 8 convicted Shikhmirza Labazanov, Magomed Gadzhiev, and Magomedali Amirkhanov of helping Aminat Saprykina obtain explosives and escorting her to the home of Daghestan's leading Muslim Sufi cleric, Said Afandi Atsayev, in August 2012.

Atsayev and six other moderate Muslims were killed in the attack. Several attacks on moderate Muslim leaders in Daghestan followed Atsayev's assassination.

Daghestan's Supreme Court also sentenced a fourth defendant, Akhmed Israpilov, to 12 years in jail for involvement into kidnapping and banditry in a separate case in which Labazanov, Gadzhiev, and Amirkhanov had also been found guilty.

Daghestan has become one of the most volatile republics in Russia's North Caucasus in recent years. Islamic insurgents professing extreme forms of Islam regularly attack moderate Muslims, police, and officials.

Based on reporting Interfax and TASS