Moscow, June 9 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Russian President Vladimir Putin has demanded that law enforcers and special services resolutely rebuke extremists and criminal formations in Russia's North Caucasus.
"We must resolutely rebuke extremists, who attempt using radical nationalist and separatist slogans, those who attempt to divide our society and weaken the unity of our country," Putin said Friday at a meet with officers from Russian defense, security, intelligence and law enforcement agencies.
"The situation in the North Caucasus must remain under a special control," he said.
"The fight against corruption, crime and criminal formations must be conducted firmly and consistently."
The Islamist insurgency, once confined largely to the republic of Chechnya, has spread across the North Caucasus in recent years.
Attacks on security forces, police and civilians are reported regularly in the neighboring republics of Dagestan, Ingushetia and Kabardino-Balkaria.
The president also said that the fight against terrorism must remain a priority for the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) noting "positive results" in the work of the service.