Federal Security Service official killed in Russia's North Caucasus
A Federal Security Service official has been killed in Russia's North Caucasus republic of Kabardino-Balkaria, a local law enforcement source said to RIA Novosti.
The killing took place late on Friday in the northern city of Baksan, 23 kilometers from the republican capital of Nalchic.
"Unknown gunmen shot dead a Federal Security Service official when he was returning home from work," the source said, adding that the official died at the scene.
Militant attacks and clashes with police are common in Russia's troubled North Caucasus republics.
While Chechnya, under the leadership of former-separatist-fighter-turned-Kremlin-ally Ramzan Kadyrov, has seen a marked reduction in militant attacks in recent years, violence has erupted in the neighboring republics of Ingushetia, Dagestan and Kabardino-Balkaria.
The Kremlin has vowed to clamp down on militant groups while stepping up efforts to boost the local economy.
On Friday, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said the North Caucasus Federal District remains unstable in terms of security, admitting that the situation in the region "has barely improved."
Russia's National Anti-Terrorism Committee (NAK) said in October more than 300 militants had been killed in the troubled region since the beginning of the year.