Special troops have shot and killed a militant in Dagestan who may have been behind two suicide bombings in the Moscow metro in 2010 that killed 40 people, officials said Friday.
The troops stormed an apartment in the town of Khasavyurt during an early morning raid on Thursday, and shot the man — whom news reports identified as Marat Shikhshaidov or Shikhshiitov – and his common-law wife, Aysha Idigova.
The man is believed to be the mastermind behind twin bomb attacks on the country's capital which saw suicide bombers detonate explosives filled with bolts and iron rods on two packed Moscow metro trains during the morning rush hour.
The first blast just before 8 a.m. tore through the second carriage of a train as it stood at the Lubyanka metro station, close to FSB headquarters. Another blast about 40 minutes later wrecked the second carriage of a train waiting at the Park Kultury metro station.
"According to preliminary information, one of the suspects in the Moscow metro bombings, Marat Shikhshiitov, and his common-law wife Aysha Idigova, an accomplice in a gang, have been liquidated," a law-enforcement official said, Interfax reported.
The official also said, however, that investigators had earlier reported the militant dead a year ago, when another man was shot and killed while resisting arrest.
Itar-Tass quoted another official giving the man's last name as Shikhshaidov.
A small child had also been in the apartment, but negotiators talked the couple into letting the child go before the raid began, an unidentified law-enforcement official said, Itar-Tass reported. The woman refused to leave, the official said.
Idigova was also the widow of several other militants who had been killed earlier, an official said, Rossiiskaya Gazeta reported.
During a search of the apartment, officers seized several handguns and a grenade.