Kazakhstan: Three police officers and one civilian were killed today following armed attacks on a police station and a security service office in Kazakhstan's largest city Almaty, the interior ministry said. One attacker, 27, has been captured but an accomplice is still at large, the interior ministry said in a statement.
The government has raised the terror threat level but not said who was behind the attack. Oil-rich Kazakhstan has recently seen rare protests and violent acts by people angry at proposed land reforms.
Two gunmen attacked a police station in central Almaty, killing the three police officers in an exchange of fire, police said. As they fled the scene, one of the gunmen shot and killed a local resident before hijacking his car. Kazakh authorities said two police officers had also been wounded in the attack and identified the detained gunman as a former convict wanted for the murder of a woman earlier this month.
It comes a month after a deadly assault in the northwestern town of Aktobe. Groups of men targeted gun stores and a military base, killing seven people. At least 18 attackers were killed by police during that attack and in the manhunt that followed.
Authorities blamed that incident on Islamist extremists. Kazakhstan, which is wealthier than other post-Soviet central Asian states, and has been ruled by the authoritarian President Nursultan Nazarbayev since 1989.