Two attackers on the run as images emerge of first ‘terror suspect’ accused of planting a nail bomb which ripped through carriages on St Petersburg metro killing at least 11 and injuring 50

April 3, 2017 in News by Slad

 

**UPDATE: Suspect pictured in story has turned himself in claiming no involvement http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4375518/Explosion-metro-St-Petersburg.html ***

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Source: Daily Mail

  • The horrific blast occurred between Sennaya Ploshchad and Sadovaya train station in St Petersburg, Russia
  • Ambulances raced to the scene of the carnage caused by a nail bomb which was detonated on the network
  • Metro officials reported blast was from an improvised explosive device on board which included shrapnel 
  • At least 11 people are reported to have been killed by the blast and 50 including children have been injured
  • Nobody has claimed responsibility, but previous attacks on Russia have been blamed on ISIS and Chechens 

By GARETH DAVIES and JULIAN ROBINSON and ANTHONY JOSEPH IN LONDON and WILL STEWART IN ST PETERSBURG FOR MAILONLINE

Two suspected terrorists are on the run after a nail bomb planted in a St Petersburg train ripped through the carriages – killing at least 11 people and injuring 50 today.

Several Russian media outlets have released the CCTV picture of the bearded suspect who was wearing a long, black top and a hat blamed for causing the carnage by detonating a bomb that was packed with shrapnel.

The terrifying incident took place on a train that was travelling between Sennaya Ploshchad and Sadovaya metro stations. A second explosive device disguised as a fire extinguisher was found and defused in a nearby station.

Nobody has claimed responsibility for the explosion, but previous attacks on Russia have been blamed on ISIS and Chechens.

A search warrant has now been issued for two people in connection with the attack – one for planting the bomb which detonated at Sennaya Ploshchad and the other for leaving an explosive device at Ploshchad Revolutsii station. Russian authorities believe the man responsible for the blast is ‘young’ and from ‘central Asia’.

A source said: ‘Two people are being sought on suspicion of planning the blasts, one of whom is thought to have placed the explosive device in the metro wagon and the second person for leaving a bomb at the metro station Ploshchad Revolutsii.’

Dozens have been injured, including at least three children, as it was reported the man left a briefcase on a train before moving carriages moments before the deadly blast.

Russian officials have released this image of a man they believe is responsible for today's massacre on the city's metro train

Russian officials have released this image of a man they believe is responsible for today’s massacre on the city’s metro train

Several media outlets in Russia have identified this man as the suspected terrorist who killed 12 people in St Petersburg

Several media outlets in Russia have identified this man as the suspected terrorist who killed 12 people in St Petersburg

Pictured is the suspected bomber (ringed) outside a Metro station in the city of St Petersburg before the explosion

Pictured is the suspected bomber (ringed) outside a Metro station in the city of St Petersburg before the explosion

A man crawls away from the train as bloodied passengers attempt to save those injured in the subway in St Petersburg, Russia

A man crawls away from the train as bloodied passengers attempt to save those injured in the subway in St Petersburg, Russia

A woman crouches over a man who has been injured in the blast as they are surrounded by carnage and blood

A woman crouches over a man who has been injured in the blast as they are surrounded by carnage and blood

A man lies down on the platform after a bomb blast rips through a Metro carriage in the city of St Petersburg

A man lies down on the platform after a bomb blast rips through a Metro carriage in the city of St Petersburg

An injured passenger is helped by emergency services outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station, following explosions in two train carriages at metro stations in St. Petersburg, Russia April 3, 2017

An injured passenger is helped by emergency services outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station, following explosions in two train carriages at metro stations in St. Petersburg, Russia April 3, 2017

A woman with a bandaged head is carried on a rescue blanket away from the massacre at the metro in St Petersburg

A woman with a bandaged head is carried on a rescue blanket away from the massacre at the metro in St Petersburg

A second bomb, disguised as a fire extinguisher and packed with ball-bearings, was found and defused at a nearby station

A second bomb, disguised as a fire extinguisher and packed with ball-bearings, was found and defused at a nearby station

An injured person walks outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station with a blood-drenched coat and red hands

An injured person walks outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station with a blood-drenched coat and red hands

Bloodied passengers were left strewn across the platform in the Russian city as emergency services scrambled to save those wounded by the bomb and the resulting shards of glass and twisted metal.

St Petersburg resident Leonid Chaika, who said he was at the station where the blast happened, said: ‘I saw a lot of smoke, a crowd making its way to the escalators, people with blood and other people’s insides on their clothes, bloody faces. Many were crying.’

A video appeared online showing passengers on the metro jumping out of the windows of the train after the explosion.

A girl can be heard screaming ‘mama’ – Russian for mother – while people can be seen lying on the platform covered in blood.

Vladimir Putin is in his hometown of St Petersburg today for talks with the president of Belarus and confirmed ‘there are dead and injured’, offering his condolences to the families of those killed.

The Kremlin leader, who wanted to visit the scene in the aftermath of the attack but was held back by security services, said: ‘I have already spoken to the head of our special services, they are working to ascertain the cause of the blasts.

‘The causes are not clear, it’s too early. We will look at all possible causes, terrorism as well as common crime.’

US President Donald Trump described the deadly bomb blast as an ‘absolutely terrible thing’ that is ‘happening all over the world’ before a working lunch with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.

The president did not make any further comment on the Monday blast that killed 11 people and injured about 40. There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but Russian trains and planes have been targeted repeatedly by Islamic militants.

Interfax news agency cited an unidentified source who says the suspect in Monday’s blast might have left the explosive device in a bag.

A video appeared online showing passengers on the metro jumping out of the windows of the train after the explosion

A girl can be heard screaming ‘mama’ – Russian for mother – while people can be seen lying on the platform covered in blood

Russian online news outlet Fontanka published the grainy photo which shows a middle-aged man who entered Petrogradskaya station 20 minutes before the blast.

Interfax news agency earlier quoted a source as saying that surveillance cameras had captured photos of the blast suspect.

At this stage it is not clear whether or not the suspect was wearing the hat and gown as a disguise.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov denied earlier speculation that President Putin was due to pass by the Sennaya Metro station around the time of the blast.

The explosion happened between the Sennaya Ploshchad station and Tekhnologichesky Institut at around 2.40pm local time, Russia’s National Anti-Terrorism Committee said.

Smoke fills the air at the platform of the metro station after two nail bombs were detonated in St Petersburg

Smoke fills the air at the platform of the metro station after two nail bombs were detonated in St Petersburg

Firefighters, emergency service vehicles and a helicopter near Tekhnologichesky Institut station of the St Petersburg metro in the aftermath of an explosion which occurred in a train at 2.40pm Moscow time, according to Russian National Anti-terrorism Committee

Firefighters, emergency service vehicles and a helicopter near Tekhnologichesky Institut station of the St Petersburg metro in the aftermath of an explosion which occurred in a train at 2.40pm Moscow time, according to Russian National Anti-terrorism Committee

Passengers disembark after a huge blast involving a nail bomb kills at least 11 people in St Petersburg, Russia

Passengers disembark after a huge blast involving a nail bomb kills at least 11 people in St Petersburg, Russia

Emergency services raced to the station as passengers flood out from the platforms

Emergency services raced to the station as passengers flood out from the platforms

A picture on Twitter claiming to show a man being treated at the scene as blood pours from his head and onto his shirt

A picture on Twitter claiming to show a man being treated at the scene as blood pours from his head and onto his shirt

An explosion on the metro in St Petersburg has ripped through a train carriage causing carnage as the door is completely blown out 

An explosion on the metro in St Petersburg has ripped through a train carriage causing carnage as the door is completely blown out

A witnesses told Russia’s Life News: ‘People were bleeding, their hair burned. We were told to move to the exit, because the movement stopped. People just fled.

‘My girlfriend was in the next car that exploded. She said that he began to shake. When she came out, she saw that people were mutilated.’

A male eyewitness said: ‘It’s just like a war here. Every special service is here, the FSB, police, and multiple – really a lot of them – ambulances.

‘I don’t think I’ve ever seen to many paramedics in my life. Something completely horrible is happening here.’

Eight bodies were recovered from the carriage while two more were found on the platform or were in the tunnel.

PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN PROMISES JUSTICE

Vladimir Putin is in his hometown of St Petersburg today for talks with the president of Belarus and confirmed ‘there are dead and injured’, offering his condolences to the families of those killed.

He also vowed that the attackers will be brought to justice and has spoken to his chief of special services.

Mr Putin said: ‘I would like to express the words of sincerest condolences to relatives of the killed and wounded.

Russian President Vladimir Putin giving statement alongside Alexander Lukashenko, President of Belarus, after the  St Petersburg attack

Russian President Vladimir Putin giving statement alongside Alexander Lukashenko, President of Belarus, after the  St Petersburg attack

‘I have already spoken with the chiefs of special services, FSB director, law enforcement bodies and special services are working. We will do everything to identify the reasons for what happened.

‘We will give a full evaluation of what happened, and city and federal authorities will do everything possible to support families of our killed and injured citizens.’

Earlier reports indicated a backpack had been thrown onto the train and witnesses also suggested there had been multiple explosions, but officials confirmed just the one blast.

Russian security agencies did find an explosive device at a different metro station in central St Petersburg and made it safe, the National Anti-Terrorist Committee said in a statement.

The device was found at the Ploshchad Vosstaniya metro station, a different location from where a blast earlier took place.

Other witnesses also described a man leaving a briefcase on one carriage before moving to another just seconds before the huge explosion.

As reports of the suspected terror attack trickled through to the capital, Moscow heightened its security and local reports suggest three metro stations – Nagatinskaja, Savelovskaya and Ugrezhskaya (CIP) – were cordoned off due to suspicious packages.

ISIS AND CHECHENS BLAMED FOR PREVIOUS TERROR ATTACK IN RUSSIA

Russian President Vladimir Putin says investigators are examining all causes for the blast in St Petersburg today – including terrorism.

And while no-one has yet come forward to claim responsibility, the country’s security services have previously said they had foiled ‘terrorist attacks’ on Moscow’s public transport system by militants.

An attack on St Petersburg, Russia’s old imperial capital, would have some symbolic force for any militant group, especially ISIS or Chechen secessionist rebels.

ISIS, which has drawn recruits from the ranks of Chechen rebels, has also threatened attacks across Russia in retaliation for the Kremlin’s military intervention in war-torn Syria. Russia has been on particular alert against radicalised Chechen militants returning from the battlefield in Syria – and wary of any attempts to resume attacks that dogged the country several years ago.

Just days ago, the Kremlin said authorities had detained one of the attackers who carried out a deadly strike on a military base in Chechnya, in which six soldiers and six rebels died.

In 2015, ISIS fanatics said they were responsible for bombing a Russian MetroJet plane flying from Egypt to St Petersburg killing all 217 on board 

In 2015, ISIS fanatics said they were responsible for bombing a Russian MetroJet plane flying from Egypt to St Petersburg killing all 217 on board

ISIS claimed responsibility for the March 24 attack, which targeted a base of Russia’s National Guard, a new branch of troops which answers directly to Putin and is tasked with defending borders and counter extremism.

It came two years after ISIS fanatics said they were responsible for bombing a Russian MetroJet plane flying from Egypt to St Petersburg killing all 217 on board.

In 2013, the southern city of Volgograd was hit by twin suicide strikes that claimed 34 lives and raised alarm over security at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games. A bombing at the main railway station killed 18 people on while a second strike hit a trolleybus and claimed 16 lives.

Days later a statement and video claiming responsibility for the bombings was posted on the website of Vilayat Dagestan, a subgroup of the militant jihadist group Caucasus Emirate.

A suicide raid on Moscow’s Domodedovo airport that was claimed by Islamic insurgents from the North Caucasus killed 37 people in January 2011. That strike was claimed by the Caucasus Emirate movement of Islamist warlord Doku Umarov.

The same airport in August 2004 saw Islamic suicide bombers board two planes and bring them down, killing a total of 90 people.

Over 330 people, half of them children, were killed in 2004 when police stormed a school in Beslan, southern Russia after a hostage taking by Islamist militants

Over 330 people, half of them children, were killed in 2004 when police stormed a school in Beslan, southern Russia after a hostage taking by Islamist militants

A suicide raid on Moscow's Domodedovo airport that was claimed by Islamic insurgents from the North Caucasus killed 37 people in January 2011. That strike was claimed by the Caucasus Emirate movement of Islamist warlord Doku Umarov (pictured)

A suicide raid on Moscow’s Domodedovo airport that was claimed by Islamic insurgents from the North Caucasus killed 37 people in January 2011. That strike was claimed by the Caucasus Emirate movement of Islamist warlord Doku Umarov (pictured)

In March 2010, two suicide bombings in the Moscow subway killed 40 people and wounded more than 100 people. Umarov claimed responsibility for that attack by two female suicide bombers, warning Russian leaders that ‘the war is coming to their cities.’

The high-speed Moscow-to-St. Petersburg train was also bombed on November 27, 2009, in an attack that left 26 dead and some 100 injured. Umarov’s group also said he ordered this attack.

Over 330 people, half of them children, were killed in 2004 when police stormed a school in Beslan, southern Russia after a hostage taking by Islamist militants.

In 2002, 120 hostages were killed when police stormed a Moscow theatre to end another hostage taking.

Chechnya was the scene of two separatist wars in the 1990s and early 2000s, but violence in the region has largely been suppressed under the iron-fisted rule of strongman leader Ramzan Kadyrov.

Putin, as prime minister, launched a 1999 campaign to crush a separatist government in the Muslim southern region of Chechnya, and as president continued a hard line in suppressing rebellion.

 Commuters walk away from the carnage as smoke fills the station in St Petersburg, Russia

 Commuters walk away from the carnage as smoke fills the station in St Petersburg, Russia

Smoke fills the station at the metro station in Russia after two nail bombs were set off killing at least 11 and injuring 50

Smoke fills the station at the metro station in Russia after two nail bombs were set off killing at least 11 and injuring 50

Russia's President Vladimir Putin (L) and Russian Civic Chamber Secretary Alexander Brechalov attend the 4th Truth and Justice Independent Regional and Local Media Forum held by the All-Russian People's Front

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin (L) and Russian Civic Chamber Secretary Alexander Brechalov attend the 4th Truth and Justice Independent Regional and Local Media Forum held by the All-Russian People’s Front

The Life News website showed pictures of blown-out train doors and several injured people on the station platform.

Metro bosses said there were reports of a blast – from an improvised explosive device – inside a train.

The subway’s administration says several stations in the northern Russian city have been closed and that an evacuation is underway Monday afternoon.

Russian news agencies quoted Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov saying that Russian President Vladimir Putin has been informed about the explosion.

Putin is in discussion with the Director of the Federal Security Service who is inside the affected subway.

Polina, who was in the carriage next to the where explosion erupted, said: ‘There was quite a lot of people in the carriage: everyone was sitting, some were standing.

ISIS CELEBRATE BLAST

Islamic State supporters have celebrated the explosions in St Petersburg saying it was revenge for Syrian air strikes.

An ISIS supporter from the al-Minbar online forum said: ‘We ask Allah to bless the operation by the lions of the Caliphate, we ask Allah to kill the Crusaders.’

Others, according to Vocativ, said it was ‘a metro to hell for the worshippers of the cross’.

Russia has killed hundreds in air strikes against the terror group in the Middle East.

‘The explosion occurred between Sennaya and Technological Institute stations.

‘There was a deafening boom, and then a strong odour and smoke.

‘We immediately went to another end of the car. It was very crowded.

‘Everything was happening on the move, the train didn’t stop. At Technological Institute everyone got off.’

‘We saw that the next car was teared apart, windows were broken, no lights, blood. People were dragged out of it, some were carried, some were walking with support.

‘There was a lot of injured. I don’t know if there were dead, we left in about two minutes.’

There were fears a second, unexploded bomb was left on a platform on the network in St Petersburg, but it transpired to be an abandoned bag.

A subway worker who asked not to be named told local press: ‘The second carriage exploded.

‘The explosion was such a force that the flesh burned, people were in scrapes of the flesh, blood everywhere.’

Another witness said: ‘Many people have sandy traces on their faces.

‘Its not clear what bomb it was, no-one figured it yet. People are panicking, many are calling their mothers.’

Anna, who was at the station at the moment of explosion: ‘People were lying down, all black, scary, with a horrible smell of burned flesh.’

Another eyewitness said: ‘Everyone was ready for death in the metro carriage.

‘After the explosion everyone was waiting for the consequences. Then we were taken out, people started helping each other, walking others out, most of them were in blood.’

An injured commuter is helped by emergency services outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station, following explosions in two train carriages at metro stations

An injured commuter is helped by emergency services outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station, following explosions in two train carriages at metro stations

Men carry one of the injured 50 on a stretcher outside Technological Institute metro station in Saint Petersburg on April 3, 2017

Men carry one of the injured 50 on a stretcher outside Technological Institute metro station in Saint Petersburg on April 3, 2017

A man with blood splattered all over his face walks away from the scene that killed at least 12 people and injured 50 more

A man with blood splattered all over his face walks away from the scene that killed at least 12 people and injured 50 more

General view of the mass gathering of emergency services attending the scene outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station, following explosions in a train carriage

General view of the mass gathering of emergency services attending the scene outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station, following explosions in a train carriage

A woman and firefighters at the entrance to Sennaya Ploshchad station of the St Petersburg metro in the aftermath of an explosion which occurred on board a train

A woman and firefighters at the entrance to Sennaya Ploshchad station of the St Petersburg metro in the aftermath of an explosion which occurred on board a train

An injured person is helped by emergency services outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station after two blasts

An injured person is helped by emergency services outside Sennaya Ploshchad metro station after two blasts

The wreckage of the blast seen here by the damage to the door as a man inspects the scene

Medics help an injured woman outside Technological Institute metro station in Saint Petersburg on April 3, 2017

Medics help an injured woman outside Technological Institute metro station in Saint Petersburg on April 3, 2017

Bodies lie strewn across the platform and the doors are blown open after the two blasts on the Russian metro network

Bodies lie strewn across the platform and the doors are blown open after the two blasts on the Russian metro network

 

Three men walk away from the train in a smoke-filled subway station after a huge blast from a suspected nail bomb

Three men walk away from the train in a smoke-filled subway station after a huge blast from a suspected nail bomb

Firefighters line the streets of St Petersburg in the immediate aftermath of the blast that has claimed at least 11 lives

Firefighters line the streets of St Petersburg in the immediate aftermath of the blast that has claimed at least 11 lives

Emergency vehicles and a helicopter are seen at the entrance to Technological Institute metro station in St Petersburg on April 3, 2017

Emergency vehicles and a helicopter are seen at the entrance to Technological Institute metro station in St Petersburg on April 3, 2017

Police officers guard the area at the entrance to Technological Institute metro station in St Petersburg on April 3, 2017

Police officers guard the area at the entrance to Technological Institute metro station in St Petersburg on April 3, 2017

Emergency service workers and ambulance workers at the entrance to Tekhnologichesky Institut station in St Petersburg

Emergency service workers and ambulance workers at the entrance to Tekhnologichesky Institut station in St Petersburg

ST PETERSBURG GOVERNOR GEORGY POLTAVCHENKO

 Dear St Petersburg.

Today, in our city there was a terrible tragedy. As a result of the explosion in the subway people died. Many of the passengers were injured.

I express my deepest condolences to the bereaved families and relatives. I wish a speedy recovery to those injured.

Law enforcement authorities and all city services are doing everything necessary, which should be done in an emergency. Medical services provide all necessary assistance to the victims.

In this difficult time we all need to support those who lost their loved ones. I ask all of Petersburgers and guests of our city to be vigilant, attentive and careful, with all the responsibility to treat what is happening.

Saint-Petersburg Government will provide all necessary assistance to the families of those killed and injured.

The leader of the Kremlin is visiting the city today and is expected to hold talks with the Belarusian president later in the day.

Sennaya Ploshad is one of the Russian city’s main metro stations, where three underground lines connect.

It is beneath the large ‘Sennaya’ shopping centre as well as the offices of Gazprombank, Russia’s third largest bank.

Flowers and candles in memory of the St Petersburg metro explosion victims at Tekhnologichesky Institut station

Flowers and candles in memory of the St Petersburg metro explosion victims at Tekhnologichesky Institut station

Spartak Moscow's fans hold a banner in memory of the St Petersburg metro explosion victims at their league match tonight

Spartak Moscow’s fans hold a banner in memory of the St Petersburg metro explosion victims at their league match tonight

People lighting candles at the Leningrad Hero City memorial by the Kremlin Wall in memory of the St Petersburg metro explosion victims

People lighting candles at the Leningrad Hero City memorial by the Kremlin Wall in memory of the St Petersburg metro explosion victims

A man laying flowers at the Leningrad Hero City memorial by the Kremlin Wall in memory of the St Petersburg metro explosion victims

A man laying flowers at the Leningrad Hero City memorial by the Kremlin Wall in memory of the St Petersburg metro explosion victims

A woman lights a candle at an entrance to Sennaya metro station in St Petersburg, just hours after the explosion on the train

A woman lights a candle at an entrance to Sennaya metro station in St Petersburg, just hours after the explosion on the train

The Mayor of Tel-Aviv in Israel lit up the the City Hall in the colours of the Russian flag as a mark of solidarity after the attack

The Mayor of Tel-Aviv in Israel lit up the the City Hall in the colours of the Russian flag as a mark of solidarity after the attack

The St Petersburg metro said in a statement carried by Russian news agencies that it has closed two stations, Technological Institute and Sennaya Ploshchad – two neighbouring stations on one line – and is evacuating all passengers.

‘Evacuation of passengers is ongoing, there are people injured,’ it said.

‘An unidentified object supposedly blew up in a (train) carriage.’

Following the reports, the Moscow metro also announced that it is ‘taking additional security measures’ as required by law in such situations, according to the network’s official Twitter account.