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    Two policemen killed in shootout with militants in Chechnya

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    MOSCOW, February 3 (RIA Novosti) - Two policemen were killed in a shootout with militants in the Republic of Chechnya in Russia's restive North Caucasus region, a source in the republic's law-enforcement bodies said on Sunday.

    According to the source, during a patrol on Saturday in the Vedeno district in southern Chechnya, the police encountered a group of militants in a forest near the village of Mesedoi. Two policemen were killed and one police officer was wounded during the fighting.

    The militants seized weapons from the scene of fighting: a Kalashnikov machine gun, three pistols, two Kalashnikov automatic rifles, and a sniper rifle, and also 30 rounds for rifle-attached grenade launchers, the source said.

    Large-scale military operations are over in the North Caucasus republic, but separatists continue to carry out raids on federal troops and Kremlin-backed police and authorities. Violence often spills into neighboring Russian regions.

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