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26 Jul, 2009 14:21

Suicide blast rocks Chechnya’s capital

Four senior Chechen police officers and a Turkish and a Georgian citizens are among six people killed in a suicide bomb attack in the Chechen republic's capital Grozny.

At least 10 others have been injured, according to the republic's law-enforcement authorities.

The latest reports say the blast occurred just before a public concert, and the police officers who were killed prevented the suicide bomber from getting into the concert hall.

The concert hall in question can hold up to 800 people.

Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov vowed to press on with an ongoing counter-terrorist operation to wipe out the remaining militants in the region.

He also said that he himself was planning on attending the ill-fated concert.

“I was to go there and had an invitation in my hands, but I was visiting some construction facilities and was late for the beginning of the show,” Ramzan Kadyrov said.

According to the Chechen president, the suicide bombers’ plan was to enter the concert hall and detonate the bomb there, with a lot of women and children present.

The security situation in Russia's Caucasus republics has deteriorated in the past months, with several high-profile attacks conducted by terrorists.

The interior ministries of Chechnya and Ingushetia are holding a joint counter-terrorist operation on the border to wipe out the remaining militants.