Moscow, July 19, Interfax - Tatarstan President Rustam Minnikhanov said the attacks on the republic's top Muslim clerics was due to their adherence to traditional Islam.
"The heads of our Muslim Board adhered to the policy of traditional Islam. Clearly, there are other trends in Islam and today's incident is an open challenge," Minnikhanov said, according to the Tatarstan government's website.
"Details of the attacks will be established by law enforcement services. I think, however, that they are connected with the muftis' professional work," Minnikhanov said.
He said that the Tatarstan leadership will not give up support for traditional Islam. "Our position must become tougher. Traditional Islam has never allowed such things, especially attacks on people who serve Islam," he said.