Gag order placed on Kiryat Shmona killings

Police suspect deaths of two FSU immigrants might be linked.

What seems to be a growing crime wave in the Upper Galilee city of Kiryat Shmona hit new levels Sunday after the second homicide in as many days rocked Israel's northernmost city. Although a gag order was placed on the investigations into the two cases, police said it was possible that the murders were related. On Saturday, a family walking near the municipal stadium was horrified when their young son came across the body of Anatoly Ziskin. Ziskin, 25, was a father to a four-year-old girl and had no prior criminal record. Family members said that he had immigrated to Israel only three years ago. Early Sunday morning, a second body, also of a young male immigrant from the former Soviet Union, was found approximately 200 meters away from where the boy found Ziskin's body. That body was hidden by the local mikve, meters away from a school for developmentally disabled children. Two Kiryat Shmona residents, Felix Gottlieb and Boris Minkin, both 23, were arrested Sunday morning, shortly before the second body was discovered. Some accounts claim that the two suspects had been seen with both of the murder victims earlier in the weekend at a local entertainment venue, possibly under the influence of alcohol. The Galilee Subdistrict, which encompasses the northernmost strip of Israel from the Mediteranean coast to the Syrian border, has seen a dramatic rise in murders this year. So far, 13 people have been murdered there since the beginning of 2007, whereas the entire year 2006 saw the same number of people murdered.