Senior policeman shot dead in Russian Caucasus

14th July 2011, Comments 0 comments

Gunmen shot dead a senior police officer in broad daylight Thursday in Russia's restive southern republic of Dagestan, where authorities are fighting a simmering Islamic insurgency, officials said.

His killers, as yet unidentified, targetted the deputy commander of an OMON special police unit, Shamil Murtuzaliyev, in the regional centre of Makhachkala, a police spokesman told AFP.

"They shot him with a pistol," he said. The decorated police colonel died on the spot.

The Kremlin is locked in a war of attrition with Muslim militants in the North Caucasus where authorities have also fought two wars with separatists in the past 20 years.

Dagestan has experienced some of the deadliest violence in the mainly Muslim southern periphery.

The latest killing comes after a village imam was shot dead during evening prayers in Dagestan earlier this month.

© 2011 AFP

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