March 23, 2024

Moscow Hit by Deadly Terrorist Attack


Moscow Hit by Deadly Terrorist Attack
The Crocus Concert Hall in the wake of the attack. mosreg.ru

On Friday evening, four gunmen opened fire in a Moscow concert hall, Crocus City Hall, where hundreds were waiting for a concert by Piknik to begin.

As of Saturday noontime, over 115 persons were reported killed and over 100 others were seriously injured, making the attack the worst terror attack on Russian soil since the Nord-Ost attack in 2002.

What else we know:

  • According to the New York Times: The U.S. Embassy in Moscow issued a security alert on March 7, warning that its personnel were “monitoring reports that extremists have imminent plans to target large gatherings in Moscow, to include concerts.” The statement warned Americans that an attack could take place in the next 48 hours. That day, the United States also privately warned Russian officials of the danger of an impending attack from IS-KP from intelligence gathered earlier in March, under the US intelligence community's "duty to warn" requirement.
  • The Islamic State affiliate in Afghanistan, called Islamic State Khorasan Province, or ISIS-K, has claimed responsibility for the attack. Founded in 2015 by disaffected members of the Pakistani Taliban, it embraces a violent version of Islam and is believed to have just over 1000 members worldwide.
  • The four terrorists responsible for the attacks are believed to be in Russian custody, allegedly captured in Bryansk, while trying to flee the country via neighboring Ukraine. Another 7 persons believed to be involved in the attack have also been detained. The four individuals are suspected of being citizens of Tadzhikistan.
  • The concert hall is located just beyond Moscow's outermost Ring Road. It was opened in 2009 and could seat over 6000. It is named for Muslim Magomayev (1942-2008), a Soviet-era singer dubbed the "Soviet Sinatra". Born in Azerbaijan, he achieved wide renown throughout Russia and the post-Soviet world for his vocal talent and charisma.
  • As of noon Moscow time, 16 hours after the attack, President Vladimir Putin had yet to make an official appearance or announcement about the attack.
  • Journalists at the cite of the terrorist attack, seeking to report on the event, were aggressively driven off, some thrown down and pinned to the asphalt
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