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Russia Deploys Riot Troops To Stop Ethnic Clashes

19 August 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Russia has deployed more than 1,000 riot troops in the southern Astrakhan Oblast to stop ethnic clashes between Chechens and Kalmyks that already left one man dead and many injured.

A huge fight broke out yesterday in the village of Yandyki at a funeral of a 24-year-old Kalmyk man who was killed by ethnic Chechens in a barroom fight on 15 August.

Fighting between Chechens and Kalmyks started during the evening of 15-16 August.

By yesterday some 300 people became involved after several homes and vehicles were burned.

Russia's RIA-Novosti reported 1,160 Interior Ministry troops were now in Yandyki to restore order.

In a statement, the Astrakhan Oblast governor's office said the situation was under control.

(AFP/'s Russian Service)

For RFE/RL's full coverage of events in Chechnya, see "Crisis In Chechnya"