At least 10 Russian soldiers have been killed in a bomb blast near the country’s breakaway Chechnya region.
Packed with metal rods, the device exploded just as a unit of interior ministry troops drove up to a steam bathhouse in Makhachkala, the regional capital of Dagestan.
At least 14 people – some troops and some passers-by – were being treated for severe injuries.
Since the separatist war erupted in Chechnya around a decade ago, neighbouring Dagestan has suffered an overspill of violence.
Some 30 police officers have been killed in attacks so far this year in the republic and a further 40 wounded.
It was the second time Russian soldiers visiting the washhouse had been targeted. In January 2002 seven were killed in the same spot and four injured.