Doctors said Yevkurov had suffered head injuries, burns and damage to internal organs and decided that he should be flown to Moscow on a special plane for more treatment.

'High alert'

The president is the third senior official to be wounded or killed in Ingushetia in
the past three weeks and the fourth in the North Caucasus this month.

Yevkurov is said to be in critical condition
in hospital [AFP]

No group has said it carried out the attack.

All the security forces in the region have been put on high alert, news agencies said.

Medvedev appointed Yevkurov as Ingush president in October after sacking his unpopular predecessor Murat Zyazikov for failing to stem corruption, unemployment and violence.

Earlier this month, Bashir Aushev, Ingushetia's former deputy prime minister, was shot dead in the main city Nazran.

Aza Gazgireyeva, the deputy head of Ingushetia's supreme court, was also killed in June.

Ingushetia is located in Russia's volatile North Caucasus, and neighbours Chechnya.