Unidentified gunmen have attacked a police car in the North Caucasus Republic of Ingushetia, a federal subject of Russia, killing at least two officers, a report says.
Citing Russia’s RIA Novosti state news agency, RT Arabic said the incident occurred late on Friday when unknown militants opened fire at a police patrol car in the town of Malgobek in northern Ingushetia.
Government officials have launched an investigation into the deadly incident.
There were conflicting reports about the casualty toll, however. Russia’s TASS news agency cited Ingushetia’s Interior Ministry as saying that one policeman had been killed in the attack and another wounded. It also said the assailants had fled the scene in a car.
Russia has been fighting militants in its North Caucasus region, where the republics of Chechnya, Dagestan, and Ingushetia, are located since the mid-1990s.
Last month, a local man, identified as Ilyas Albakov, was detained in Ingushetia over the accusation that he was a member of the Daesh terrorist group.
Violence first broke out in Chechnya in 1994, when 250,000 people were forced to flee to neighboring territories because of a war between Chechen separatists and the Russian army.
After a short period of relative peace from 1996 to 1999, war resumed following attacks blamed on Chechen militant groups. An estimated 100,000 people have been killed and thousands more displaced in the conflict.