Gunbattle breaks out in Chechen capital, 9 dead

December 4, 2014 8:55 AM

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Gunbattle breaks out in Chechen capital, 9 dead

GROZNY, Russia: A gunbattle broke out early Thursday in the capital of Russia's North Caucasus republic of Chechnya, leaving at least three traffic police officers and six gunmen dead, authorities said. The fighting punctured the patina of stability ensured by years of heavy-handed rule by a Kremlin-appointed leader.

The violence erupted hours before Russian President Vladimir Putin was to make his annual state of the nation address in Moscow.

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