Moscow: Two blasts near a police post killed at least 15 people and wounded more than 20 in Dagestan, part of Russia's restive Caucasus region, the interior ministry has said.

"At least 15 people have been killed, including 12 police officers and three rescue workers from Russia's emergency services ministry," a spokeswoman told media, adding that the dead in Thursday’s blasts included civilians.

And while early reports had said more than 20 people had been wounded that figure could rise, she added.

The first blast went off at 10:30 pm (00:00 IST) near a traffic police post in Dagestan's capital Makhachkala: a car exploded as police tried to stop it for an identity check, said the spokeswoman.

One police source told a news agency that the car's driver had triggered the device.

The blast sparked a huge fire and the second explosion took place after the emergency services had arrived at the scene, said the spokeswoman.

The blast damaged about 20 cars, Russian news agencies reported.

Russia is fighting an Islamist insurgency in the Caucasus, mostly in Dagestan and Ingushetia.


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