A bomb killed at least 10 Russian soldiers Friday as they arrived at a public bathhouse in a town near the rebellious republic of Chechnya, prosecutors and physicians said.
The bomb packed with metal rods exploded as a unit of Interior Ministry troops approached the washhouses in the town of Makhachkala, the regional capital of Dagestan, a Russian republic that borders Chechnya.
"I stepped out of my house to buy a paper and saw from the window of the shop three military cars approach the bathhouse," said Magomed Abdullayev, who lives in a neighboring building. "When I came out of the shop, there was an explosion, and I saw a lot of smoke and a woman was knocked over by the blast."
Prosecutors said 28 people were wounded in the explosion. Fourteen people were being treated for severe injuries, said Kazamfar Magomedov, the chief physician of a local first-aid team.
Violence from Chechnya, where a separatist war erupted more than a decade ago, has spilled across the border into Dagestan. The neighboring Russian republic, which lies between Chechnya and the Caspian Sea, has been the scene of numerous bombings, shootings and incursions by Chechen rebels.
The soldiers were from the 8th squadron of the Interior Ministry's special forces.
In January 2002 a bomb at the same spot in Makhachkala killed seven soldiers and wounded four others.
The soldiers who died Friday were part of a contingent of about 50 who arrived at the bathhouse in three trucks from barracks outside town for a weekly visit.