Russian police kill 2 rebels after suicide blast

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MAKHACHKALA, Russia (AP) — Police in Russia’s south say they have killed two militants in a counterterrorism operation launched in response to a suicide blast that took the lives of six officers.

An area on the outskirts of Makhachkala, the capital of Dagestan, has been in lockdown since Wednesday’s suicide car bombing at a police station as authorities hunt the masterminds and their accomplices.

Dagestan police spokesman Mark Tolchinsky said authorities early Thursday gunned down two suspected insurgents who had barricaded themselves inside a house. He refused to confirm reported comments by a spokesman for federal investigators in Moscow that the militants had planned Wednesday’s attack.

Violence continues to spill over from two bloody wars in neighboring Chechnya.