Four policemen shot dead in North Caucasus


Two masked gunmen have shot dead four traffic policemen in one of Russia's restive North Caucasus republics, reports say.

The four policemen were sitting in a cafe on their lunch break when the attack happened in Kabardino-Balkaria.

A police spokesman said that after the gunmen opened fire they commandeered a taxi and escaped.

Security officials in the region are regular targets of Islamist rebels who seek independence from Moscow.

A fifth policeman was taken to hospital in a critical condition following the attack in the small town of Chegem.

In Dagestan, another Caucasus province, two suspected insurgents were killed in an overnight gun battle with police, AP reports.

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