4 killed in Almaty violence

By Agence-France Presse

ALMATY -- Three police officers and one civilian were killed July 18 following armed attacks on a police station and a security service office in Kazakhstan's largest city, Almaty, the Interior Ministry (MVD) said.

Parts of the city were in lockdown following the incident with one suspect in custody and a manhunt under way for an accomplice still at large, the MVD said in a statement.

The detained man is accused of killing a local resident during a carjacking and attacking a police station at about 11am, shooting a police officer and taking his gun, said the statement.

The suspect then shot two officers as they gave chase before being arrested.

"According to preliminary information, the detained man is a 27-year-old man with previous convictions," the ministry said, adding that he is "suspected of murdering a woman at the weekend".

It said that police are now searching for the gunman's "partner in crime".

Local media reported that at least seven police are being treated in hospital.

The country's anti-terror service has issued a red alert threat warning following the attacks and police have called on residents of the city to stay in their homes.

The country has been rocked by several violent incidents in recent months.

Gunmen went on a rampage in the northwestern city of Aktobe June 5, killing three civilians at two gun stores before trying to storm a military base with a hijacked bus, killing three soldiers.

In a statement on last month's violence, President Nursultan Nazarbayev called the attackers "followers of radical pseudo-religious groups" adding that the gunmen had operated on "instructions received from abroad".

At least 18 suspects were killed in police anti-terror raids following those attacks.

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