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Russia Says Armed Group Leader Killed In Daghestan

Russian authorities say the leader of an armed criminal group has been killed in the volatile North Caucasus region of Daghestan.

The National Antiterrorism Committee said on August 14 that the leader of the group, known as the Khunzakh gang, was "liquidated" during a security operation in the western village of Orota on August 13.

The man was identified as Khadzhimurad Gadzhiyev, who had been on Russia’s most-wanted list for years.

There was no way to immediately verify the Russian statement.

Officials have accused Gadzhiyev's group of killing a Muslim cleric in 2014 and of extorting large amounts of money from businesses in Daghestan.

Daghestan has become the epicenter of violence linked to an insurgency fueled by two post-Soviet separatist wars in neighboring Chechnya.

The region is also plagued by organized crime, political disputes, clan rivalry, and persistent poverty.

Based on reporting by Interfax and TASS

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