Moment Russian synagogue, church go up in flames as police close off city | World | News

Disturbing video shows the moment religious buildings were set alight as terrorists wielding machine guns killed at least seven people in Russia’s southern republic of Dagestan.

At least six police officers and a priest were killed after gunmen opened fire at a synagogue, at least two churches and a police post, the local interior ministry said. A dozen or more police officers were also wounded, Russian state news agencies reported, citing local law enforcement officials.

The shootings occurred in Dagestan’s capital, Makhachkala, a sprawling city on the Caspian Sea, and Derbent, a city on the border with Azerbaijan. All exits from Makhachkala are now blocked, the Ministry of Internal Affairs for Dagestan reported.

Dagestan, a predominantly Muslim republic that is also home to a Jewish population, has seen a rise in violence for at least three decades.

Ethnic and religious tenisions in the republic have surged since the war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip broke out in October.

In October, an angry mob stormed an airport in Makhachkala searching for Jewish passengers on a flight from Israel. The attack shocked and appalled Jews in Russia and drew condemnation from the Israeli government.

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