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MODERATE MUFTI KILLED IN KAZAN, TATARSTAN

MODERATE MUFTI VALIULLA YAKUPOV KILLED
 
 IN KAZAN, TATARSTAN



The Mufti in Tatarstan, Ildus Fayzov, was wounded by a car bomb attack in Kazan on Thursday 07/19/2012, and his deputy Mufti Valiulla Yakupov gunned down in a separate incident Russian police said.

Ildus Fayzov, who was the Mufti of Tatarstan and the most senior Islamic official in Russia's largely Muslim Tatarstan region, was fatally wounded in a car bomb attack in Kazan, the capital of Tatarstan, about 735km east of Moscow on the Asian side of the Ural and his deputy killed in a separate shooting.

Ildus Fayzov's car was blown up as he left a radio station in the city. His deputy, Mufti Valiulla Yakupov, was shot dead at about the same time at the entrance to his home in Kazan, the federal Investigative Committee said. It is no doubt that the attacks were coordinated and timed by the same group.
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There were no immediate claims of responsibility for the attacks. Tatarstan, in central Russia, has a large Muslim population.

The motive in this case is unclear, but Vladimir Markin, a spokesman for Russia's Investigative Committee, said both leaders were known for fighting extremism and their professional work was being investigated as one of the reasons for the attacks.

Muslim rebels say they are fighting for a separate Islamic state in the strip of provinces along Russia's southern Caucasus border and sometimes target mainstream Muslim leaders, who have the backing of regional authorities and Moscow. But their activities have been mostly contained to the Muslim republics of Chechnya, Dagestan and Ingushetia in the North Caucasus.

Oil-producing Tatarstan, which has a higher degree of autonomy from Moscow than most regions and has a majority ethnic Tatar population, is relatively peaceful. It has a large Muslim population.which as a whole is predominantly Orthodox Christian.

Four suspects were arrested, on Saturday 07/21/2012. "Investigators believe the main motive was the professional activity of the victims, including their ideological differences with opponents," investigators said in a statement after the arrests. Faizov had taken "a tough position toward organisations that preach radical forms of Islam", they said.

"In addition, he took control of the movement of financial resources of the organisation Ideal-Haj, which sent Muslims to Mecca, and on this basis a conflict occurred between the Mufti and the leader of this organisation, which threatened him" hinting toward a more common criminal motive rather then an ideological dispute.
 
 
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22/07/2012 06:57:37


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