Ep. 25 – Report on Terrorist Attacks in Dagestan

SpecialEurasia Geopolitical Report Podcast Ep. 25 - Report About Terrorist Attacks in Dagestan
Geopolitical Report - SpecialEurasia
Ep. 25 - Report on Terrorist Attacks in Dagestan


The latest episode of the SpecialEurasia Geopolitical Report Podcast delves into the recent coordinated terrorist attacks that took place in the cities of Makhachkala and Derbent in Dagestan.

These tragic events saw coordinated attacks on police posts, churches, and a synagogue in the North Caucasus republic of Dagestan, resulting in the death of 20 individuals, the majority of whom were police officers.

Five of the attackers were also killed during the assaults. Additionally, 46 people sustained injuries and required hospitalization following the Sunday evening attacks. In the wake of these events, Dagestan, a predominantly Muslim republic located in southern Russia, has declared three days of mourning.

The attacks tragically claimed the life of an Orthodox priest among others. The seemingly coordinated assaults targeted key locations in the cities of Derbent and Makhachkala.

Dagestan, situated in the North Caucasus along the Caspian Sea, shares borders with Azerbaijan and Georgia to the south and southwest, and Russian republics such as Chechnya and Kalmykia to the west and north. Home to a diverse population exceeding 3.1 million people and consisting of over 30 ethnic groups, Dagestan occupies a strategically significant position. The region has seen substantial economic growth and infrastructural investments, particularly in the Makhachkala Sea Trade Port, positioning Dagestan as a crucial logistic hub linking the North Caucasus with the South Caucasus, the Caspian Sea region, Central Asia, and the Middle East.

Dagestan: Context Background

Historically, Dagestan has been troubled by militancy and terrorist activities, with international scholars and journalists often citing it as one of the most unstable areas in the North Caucasus. However, recent efforts by the Kremlin have aimed to stabilise the region and mitigate threats from religious radicalisation.

On June 19th, 2024, the National Anti-Terrorism Committee (NAC) convened in Dagestan to discuss enhancing anti-terrorism measures. This meeting, chaired by Deputy Director of the FSB of Russia, Igor Sirotkin, emphasised improving security in high-traffic areas such as transport facilities and hotels.

The growing popularity of Dagestan as a tourist destination, which saw 1.7 million visitors in 2023 with expectations of increased numbers in 2024, underscores the importance of these security enhancements.

Recent months have also seen the propagation of militant ideologies in the North Caucasus.

On April 17th, 2024, an audio recording was released by militants from Ingushetia calling for support of the Islamic State. This appeal aimed to revive the Caucasian branch of the Islamic State, which had been significantly diminished by Russian security forces.

Additionally, incidents such as the March 22nd, 2024 attack on the Crocus City Hall in Moscow, and the October 29th, 2023 protest at Makhachkala Airport, highlight ongoing security challenges such as the terrorist threat and rising antisemitism and xenophobia. The latter event saw Dagestani protesters opposing Israeli military actions, resulting in a tense confrontation at the airport.

The podcast also touches on the socio-political climate within Dagestan, noting the activities of the Dagestan National Centre (DNC), a group advocating for the republic’s independence from Russian control. This organisation has called for mass disobedience and established the volunteer battalion “Imam Shamil” supporting the Ukrainian government against Russian forces, signaling the complex and multifaceted nature of the region’s political landscape.


Tge recent attacks in Dagestan underscore the region’s ongoing security challenges and the potential influence of jihadist propaganda. These attacks appear aimed at destabilising the North Caucasus, demonstrating Russia’s vulnerability to terrorism amid its involvement in the Ukraine conflict and ongoing military reforms.

The SpecialEurasia Geopolitical Report Podcast provides an in-depth analysis of these events, exploring their implications for regional stability and security.

For reports and risk assessment about Dagestan and Russia’s North Caucasus, contact us at info@specialeurasia.com for scheduling a consulting meeting.