Russia on Monday blamed “external interference” for an anti-Israel riot that closed an airport in the Muslim-majority region of Dagestan the previous day. “Yesterday’s events at Makhachkala airport are, to a large extent, the result of external interference,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters. Russian police on Monday said they had arrested 60 people suspected of storming the airport, seeking to attack Jewish passengers coming from Israel. Dozens of protesters, many of them chanting “Allahu akbar” (God is greatest), broke through doors and barriers at Makhachkala airport on Sunday, with some charging onto the runway. “Against the backdrop of TV footage showing the horrors of what is happening in the Gaza Strip — the deaths of people, children, old people, it is very easy for enemies to take advantage of and provoke the situation,” Peskov told reporters on Monday. The Kremlin did not provide further details on its claim of “external interference”. State media earlier cited Dagestan’s governor as saying the “initiators of this action are our enemies who organised it from Ukrainian territory.” In response to the events, President Vladimir Putin was due to hold a meeting with his top advisers, including the defence minister and spy chiefs, later on Monday to discuss “the West’s attempts to use the events in the Middle East to split Russian society,” Peskov said.