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5 Killed as Gunman Opens Fire During Maslenitsa Celebrations in Southern Russia

© Sputnik / Magomed Aliev / Go to the photo bankSpecial forces' soldiers on an anti-terrorist operation , Dagestan (File)
Special forces' soldiers on an anti-terrorist operation , Dagestan (File) - Sputnik International
People in the city of Kizlyar in the southern Russian republic of Dagestan came under fire while returning from a church service amid the celebration of Maslenitsa, a traditional Russian folk holiday.

The death toll in the shooting climbed to five, the city authorities said on Sunday. An injured woman died of the wounds in a hospital, according to the republic's interior ministry.

It was initially reported that four people were killed with another four being injured. The republic's health ministry has said that five people have been hospitalized.

READ MORE: WATCH Alleged Video of Shooting During Maslenitsa Celebration in Southern Russia

Two policemen, according to Dagestan's Interior Ministry, were among those wounded.

The incident occurred when a shooter opened fire at people who came out of a church after a service earlier on Sunday.

"The incident has taken place in Kizlyar. According to preliminary information, four people were killed. There are wounded people. The criminal has been shot dead," a source in the law enforcement agencies told Sputnik immediately after the shooting.

The source has also said that the perpetrator, a 23-year-old man, wasn't a member of any radical group and never had problems with the law.

The police have identified the place where the perpetrator lived and searched it. 

A criminal investigation has been launched into the case with the head Russian Investigative Committee Alexander Bastrykin taking the probe under personal control.

Sergei Goncharov, the deputy head of Kizlyar's administration has also told Sputnik that an emergency response headquarters has been established in Kizlyar.

"A group of psychologists of Dagestan's Emergencies Ministry has departed to the town to work with the relatives of the victims," Goncharov said.

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