Five women have been killed after a gunman opened fire on people leaving a church service in Russia’s Dagestan region.
Russian news agency Tass reported that the gunman died after killing four worshippers and wounding four others in an attack in the town of Kizlyar.
Another of the victims – all of whom were female – died of her injuries in hospital, according to a spokesperson for the regional ministry of internal affairs.
He was reportedly armed with a hunting rifle and charged towards the church shouting “Allahu Akbar”, the Arabic phrase meaning “God is Great”, according to Father Pavel, an Orthodox Priest who had delivered the service.
Tass quoted Kizlyar’s mayor, Alexander Shuvalov, on the number of people killed and injured in the attack.
“Four people were killed. The shooter was shot dead. Two police officers and a woman were wounded,” said Mayor Shuvalov.
The gunman targeted worshippers at a Russian Orthodox church in the mainly Muslim region, although no motive has been established yet.
According to Interfax, the shooter has been identified as a local man in his early 20s.
Dagestan is a predominantly Muslim region of the Caucasus, located between the Black and Caspian seas.
It has been the scene of an Islamist insurgency following separatist wars in the neighboring Chechnya.