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A judge has been shot dead in Makhachkala, the capital of Russia's North Caucasus Republic of Daghestan.

The Russian Investigative Committee's branch in Daghestan says two unknown men shot judge Zainudin Madanov in Makhachkala on November 4.

Madanov died at the scene.

The report comes hours after Russia's National Anti-Terror Committee said that three suspected members of an illegal armed group were killed by security forces in Daghestan's Lak District.

The North Caucasus has become Russia's most violence-plagued region in recent years.

Attacks against officials, judges, and security forces often are linked to organized crime or the Islamic insurgency.

After separatist wars in nearby Chechnya in the mid-1990s and early 2000s, Islamic militancy has spilled over into other North Caucasus republics like Daghestan, Ingushetia, and Kabardino-Balkaria.

Based on reporting by ITAR-TASS and Interfax