Top official killed in the Caucasus

Kazbek Pagiev, the former deputy prime minister of Russia’s southern republic of North Ossetia recently removed from office, has been killed.

Investigators say he and his driver were shot dead in the republic’s capital Vladikavkaz when unknown gunmen opened fire at Pagiev’s car. Pagiev, who was also mayor of Vladikavkaz, only served in the republic’s capital for less than a month.

It is not the first time a high-ranking official has been killed in North Ossetia. In November, after less than a year in office, Vladikavkaz mayor Vitaly Karaev was gunned down. The investigation has put forward several versions of the murder, one of them being due to his official activities. Recently the deputy mayor Mayram Tamayev was injured as a result of an attempted murder.