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Russian Interior Ministry confirms death of gunmen wanted in traffic cops’ murders

April 06, 9:09 updated at: April 06, 11:18 UTC+3 MOSCOW

On April 4, unidentified armed men attacked two traffic police officers who arrived at a road accident scene in Russia's Astrakhan

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© Valery Sharifulin/TASS

MOSCOW, April 6. /TASS/. The Russian Interior Ministry has confirmed that four individuals suspected of shooting and killing policemen in Russia’s southern city of Astrakhan had been eliminated during a special operation, one of them was killed by reprisal fire, the ministry spokeswoman, Irina Volk, informed TASS on Thursday.

"Police officers, in collaboration with Russian National Guard units and Russia’s Federal Security Service, have eliminated four wanted individuals in the case of attacking the policemen in Astrakhan. Last night one of the suspects was eliminated and identified as one of the wanted individuals in the murder case of April 4, another wounded person was able to escape. The wounded person and two other wanted individuals in the case of attacking the policemen were eliminated during a special operation," she noted.

"The individuals suspected of killing traffic police officers in the Astrakhan region, Vladimir Dyakonov and Dmitry Shkolnikov, offered armed resistance during their detention. It was decided to eliminate the individuals suspected of committing felonies against law enforcement officers. All the assailants, and those were four individuals, have been eliminated during the operation," she said.

According to Volk, the National Guard officers came under gunfire in the small hours of Thursday morning when they tried to stop a car and check it. "One of the attackers was killed by reprisal fire. Three officers were wounded," she emphasized, adding that three more suspects were eliminated later.

Investigators are currently working at the scene. Criminal proceedings have been launched over attack against Russian National Guard fighters under the article "Encroachment on life of law enforcement officers, theft of weapons and illegal storage of firearms and ammunition."

Earlier reports said that on April 4, unidentified armed men attacked two traffic police officers who arrived at a road accident scene in Astrakhan. They made several shots at the policemen who died instantly.

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