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More media workers killed in Dagestan

A director of a local television station in Dagestan who was on his way to repair television equipment was shot dead on 13 May, reports the Glasnost Defence Foundation (GDF). TBS director Sayid Ibragimov was ambushed by gunmen as he was travelling with a team of repairmen on their way to restore a TV re-transmitter damaged by militants a day earlier. Ibragimov's car and an accompanying police jeep were attacked near the village of Ayazi. Gunmen set off a bomb in front of the vehicles and then opened fire on them, killing five men and wounding four others.

Only a week earlier, GDF reported on the murder of Shamil Aliyev, founder and manager of the radio stations Priboi and Vatan and director of the television network TNT-Makhachkala. Aliyev's car came under fire from unidentified attackers in broad daylight in Dagestan's capital, Makhachkala.

According to GDF, Aliyev may have been killed either in connection with his business activities or for being a staunch opponent of Wahhabism, a conservative form of Islam that has gained popularity in Dagestan and other North Caucasus republics. According to "Kommersant Daily", Aliyev was a follower of "traditional" Islam and his radio and TV broadcasts were anti-Wahhabist in their tone.

Several journalists have been murdered in Dagestan in recent years, such as political journalist Abdulmalik Akhmedilov, who was gunned down in September 2009.

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