Eyewitness Account Of Makhachkala, Dagestan Attack on June 23

An Eyewitness Account of the Makhachkala Attack

The air hung heavy with dust and the acrid tang of smoke. Screams echoed through the narrow streets, a chilling counterpoint to the staccato bursts of gunfire. In the heart of Makhachkala, the usually bustling capital of Dagestan, a scene of unimaginable violence unfolded.

An Eyewitness Account of the Makhachkala Attack

In a sickening display of cowardice, terrorists struck Dagestan on June 23rd! Between 6:30 and 7:00 pm, reports started flooding in of attacks on police in Makhachkala and Derbent. These weren’t just any targets – houses of worship, churches and synagogues, were also under fire! By 8 pm, the National Anti-Terrorism Committee confirmed the attacks, spanning two cities and hitting four houses of worship on top of a police post. And what was the response? People were already brawling in the streets by this point, and all the Interior Ministry could do was tell Makhachkala residents to hide indoors while the fighting raged. Is this the safety we deserve? This is outrageous!

It took them over an hour and a half to take down these thugs in Makhachkala! While four militants were finally eliminated by 9:45 pm, the fighting dragged on in Derbent. It wasn’t until nearly 11:05 pm that this nightmare supposedly “ended” with a total of five militants killed.

In a despicable act of hate on Trinity Sunday, one of the most sacred days for Christians, a militant attack ripped through Makhachkala and Derbent. 20 innocent lives were barbarically cut short, with at least 15 police officers defending our communities. Even a beloved Orthodox priest and his church security guard were not spared from this brutality.

Makhachkala Attack
Makhachkala Attack

The incident has been classified as a terrorist attack and a criminal case has been initiated. Investigators are working on the connections of the terrorists, interviewing their relatives and friends, the republican Ministry of Internal Affairs reported.

The aftermath in Makhachkala paints a grim picture of the militants’ savagery. Ermoshkin Street’s synagogue, a private building normally closed except for holidays, bears the scars of the attack. Police guarding the area confirmed the owner only opened it on special occasions. Despite being closed, the attackers scaled the building with a ladder, gaining entry and setting fire to the room from multiple angles. Witnesses nearby saw smoke billowing from both sides of the building as first responders rushed to the scene.

The attack’s desecration is evident at the sealed-off synagogue on Ermoshkin Street. Police, following orders from Dagestan’s Interior Minister Abdurashid Magomedov, have barred photography of the building. The brutality is clear – the balcony fence the attackers used lies in ruins, and a shattered window gapes on the second floor. Most disturbingly, the terrorists scrawled suras and Koranic verses on the synagogue door in red spray paint, a vile act of religious manipulation.

Details on Cathedral Attack : Guard Mikhail Killed

A horrific attack shattered the peace at the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary on Gromova Street. An employee recounted the nightmare, revealing the assault happened during a service with the priest and parishioners inside. The attackers struck from two directions, leaving bullet holes on the main gate as grim evidence. Security guard Mikhail bravely tried to defend the church, but was tragically killed by the militants. An impromptu memorial now stands where he fell, adorned with flowers brought by mourners. His partner, Sergei, remembers Mikhail as a “young, gentle, wonderful man.” This attack has left the community devastated.

Memorial where the cathedral guard Michael died in Makhachkala, Dagestan
Memorial where the cathedral guard Michael died in Makhachkala, Dagestan

Heroic Guard Gives Time for Parishioners to Hide During Cathedral Attack

The attack on the Cathedral unfolded during a service. As the assault began from two sides, security guard Mikhail bravely engaged the militants in a shootout. This act of heroism provided crucial time for the 19 parishioners inside to reach safety. They managed to barricade themselves within the church while the gunfire raged outside.

The violence didn’t stop there. The attackers set fire to cars parked in the cathedral courtyard, leaving a devastating scene of five burnt vehicles, including a minibus.

Cathedral’s Educational Center Devastated by Arson

The attackers’ rampage extended beyond the cathedral walls. An employee described how they stormed the open door of the educational center, a hub for Sunday school, choir practice, and events. Instead of children’s laughter, the center now echoes with the heavy scent of burnt wood. The militants set fire strategically, ensuring maximum damage. Several rooms are completely gutted, while others are choked with soot, a haunting reminder of the attack’s brutality.

Makhachkala Rejects Hatred: Residents Stand Together After Attacks

The recent attacks in Makhachkala have shocked the city, but residents are clear: this isn’t who they are.Muslims, Jews, and Christians have coexisted peacefully for generations, living as neighbors and friends.”We’ve grown up together,” says a local shopkeeper, highlighting the city’s long history of interfaith harmony. “

The synagogue has always been here, there have never been conflicts.”Residents across the city, Muslim and non-Muslim alike, condemn the attacks. They emphasize that Islam strictly prohibits such violence.This attack is seen as the work of extremists, fueled by radical ideology spread online.While shaken, the people of Makhachkala refuse to be cowed. They are scared, but their daily lives continue. “We move away from this and our lives go on,” says a woman who works near the attack site.

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  1. My blood is boiling! These monsters attacked churches, synagogues? Places of peace? What kind of cowards target the innocent? They took lives for nothing, shattering the sanctity of prayer. Makhachkala, we grieve with you, but this hate won’t win. The world needs to stand together and condemn these attacks in the strongest possible terms! There’s no justification for such barbarity. Our hearts ache for the families ripped apart by this violence. They targeted houses of worship in a desperate attempt to divide us, but we won’t let them win. #MakhachkalaStrong This isn’t just an attack on Dagestan, it’s an attack on all humanity. We will not be divided by hate! Those responsible need to be brought to justice swiftly and face the full consequences of their actions. Every life lost is a scar on our world. Sending all our strength to Makhachkala. You are in our thoughts, and we stand with you in solidarity during this darkest of times. The world is watching, and we will not forget this act of evil.

  2. Incensed! How dare they target a man of the cloth! This barbarity cannot stand. Father Kotelnikov deserved peace, not violence. This act of hate stains Dagestan. Those responsible must face justice. The world is watching! #JusticeForFatherKotelnikov #EndReligiousViolence

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