7 killed in shootout in Russia during sweep for militants before Olympics

Three Russian servicemen and four gunmen were killed in a shootout in Russia Wednesday during a sweep for militants for the Sochi Winter Olympics.

According to Reuters, Russia's National Anti-terrorism Committee (NAC) said the dead gunmen included a man accused of carrying out a car bomb attack in Pyatigorsk last year that killed three people.

The country is on high alert after last month's two suicide bombings, which have fueled security concerns.

In a statement, the NAC said a militant group was trapped in a house in the Karlanyurt village in the Dagestan region.  Five officers were also injured in the operation, Reuters reported.

Approximately 37,000 personnel are now in place to provide security for the Olympics and the International Olympic Committee has expressed confidence the games will be safe, the report said.

Russia's Investigative Committee, which looks into bombings and other attacks, appealed to civilians to be more vigilant and help avert the threat of terrorist attacks.

Click for more from Reuters.