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2 Police Officers Killed in Gun Attack in Russia’s North Caucasus

The scene of Sunday’s armed attack in the republic of Karachayevo-Cherkessia.

At least two police officers and five assailants have been killed in a firefight in Russia’s North Caucasus republic of Karachayevo-Cherkessia, Russian law enforcement officials said Monday, the second such attack in the region over the past week.

A gunfight broke out late Sunday when the unidentified attackers approached officers on duty and fired an explosive device in their direction, according to the local branch of Russia’s Investigative Committee, which probes major crimes.

“The police officers returned fire. Every suspect was eliminated in the firefight,” the law enforcement body said in a statement, adding that two officers were killed and four others were hospitalized.

A video of the aftermath released by investigators showed a damaged SUV parked next to a traffic police vehicle, as well as a collection of weapons and several blurred bodies lying on the ground.

Authorities launched a criminal case on charges of attempted assassination against law enforcement officials, as well as on illegal arms possession.

Investigators in Karachayevo-Cherkessia said they had identified the gunmen as those involved in last Sunday’s attack that killed two traffic police officers and seriously wounded a third in the region.

The regional head of Karachayevo-Cherkessia Rashid Temrezov said at the time that a manhunt for the perpetrators was underway. On Monday, he did not indicate whether those killed were involved in both incidents.

Armed attacks on law enforcement officers are not uncommon in Russia’s North Caucasus.

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