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Kazakhstan Says Salafists Behind Foiled Terror Plot

Kazakh security officials say followers of an ultra-conservative branch of Islam were behind a foiled terror attack.

The Kazakh National Security Committee (KNB) said on June 29 that it had detained several members of a group that had planned "terrorist acts using improvised explosive devices."

One of the suspects killed himself by detonating such a device, according to the KNB.

Speaking to reporters on June 30, KNB head Vladimir Zhumakanov said the six detainees were Salafists, but added that they had no links to those behind a deadly attack in the city of Aqtobe earlier this month.

In that incident, about two dozen men described by the authorities as sympathizers of the Islamic State extremist group attacked gun stores and a national guard facility, killing seven people.

Security forces killed 18 attackers.

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbaev has described the Aqtobe attackers as Salafists.

Salafists follow a strict form of Sunni Islam and do not recognize other branches of Islam, such as Shi'a and Sufism.

Based on reporting by Reuters