Russian Port City Of St. Petersburg Hit By Explosion As World Waits On Putin’s Response

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RWC News Russian Port City Of St. Petersburg Hit By Explosion As World Waits On Putin’s Response

Wreckage of St. Petersburg train station after explosion of shrapnel briefcase bomb.

Today one bomb went off in an underground train in St. Petersburg, Russia. It has been reported by Russia’s Anti-Terrorist Committee that 10 people have been killed and that 50 or more have been injured, some grievously. Authorities and citizens jumped into action in the smoke-filled subway station, coming to the aid of their fellow citizens.

The amount of injuries indicate that this was a somewhat crowded train car, perhaps a commuter train.

RATC has also confirmed that there was another bomb found on another train that did not detonate. Teams were sent in to disarm the bomb and did so successfully.

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RWC News Russian Port City Of St. Petersburg Hit By Explosion As World Waits On Putin’s Response

Destruction of the train car.

All 62 St. Petersburg metro stations are now closed. The city is on high alert, knowing they may have caught a break with only half of the bombs working.

The train car, on its way to the Technical Institute, exploded between stations. Windows blown out, the metal doors of the train nearly blown off; the force of the bomb was extreme.

It is currently being reported that the explosion was caused by a briefcase bomb.

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There are reports that the bombs were filled with shrapnel. The means that the severity of some of the injuries could be fatal and thus the death toll could climb. One eyewitness described victims of the attack as being ‘mutilated’.

CCTV has released an image of the suspected attacker. The man’s image was captured by security cameras in the St. Petersburg train station. Pictured here, the alleged attacker dons a beard and a cap.

The Governor of St. Petersburg has come out and said, “Law enforcement authorities and all city services are doing everything necessary….In this difficult time we all need to support those who lost their loved ones. I ask all Peterburgers and guests of our city to be vigilant, attentive and careful.”

President Vladimir Putin has also made a statement, “The causes are not clear, it’s too early. We will look at all possible causes, terrorism as well as common crime.”

RWC News Russian Port City Of St. Petersburg Hit By Explosion As World Waits On Putin’s Response

Putin is scheduled to be in St. Petersburg today.

Putin happens to be in St. Petersburg today for a meeting with the President of Belarus. One is left to wonder whether there is a connection between Putin’s presence and the attack or if they were merely coincidence.

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Though no terrorist organization has claimed responsibility, and Russian authorities are not ruling out other criminal possibilities, this attack would fit with the trend of previous terror attacks in Russia.

In 2004, male suicide bombers blew themselves up in a Moscow Metro station, killing 41 Muscovites.

In 2009 there was a deadly attack on a high-speed train going through Russia. In this attack 27 people were killed. The cause of the derailment and the deaths was a homemade chemical bomb.

In 2010 two women suicide bombers, sometimes known in Russia as ‘shahidka’, or ‘black widows’, attacked Moscow Metro. The results were 40 deaths and 100 injuries. These women were.

Volgograd was targeted in 2013, their transportation was attacked on two consecutive days by ethnic Russians who converted to Islam. On December 29, one man attacked a train station. On December 30, another man attacked a trolleybus. Thirty-two people were killed in total and 85 more were injured.

RWC News Russian Port City Of St. Petersburg Hit By Explosion As World Waits On Putin’s Response

The 2016 assassination of the Russian ambassador by a Turkish national.

Most recently, at the end of 2016, Russia’s ambassador to Turkey was assassinated while giving a speech at a museum in Istanbul. This attack was a lone-wolf, an off-duty police officer, who shot the ambassador in the back. The assassin called out ‘Allahu Akbar’ and screamed that the Turks should never forget what the Russians have done in Syria.

Putin’s responses to these attacks have been verbally strong. He denounced, immediately, that the assassination was a terror attack.

In 2013, Putin responded to the Volgograd attack with, “We will strongly and decisively continue the battle against terrorists until their total annihilation.”

Putin continues to wage his battle against terrorists, both foreign and domestic, who appear to have struck again today in the heart of Russia. In the coming hours, we will find out if the culprit is the Chechens who have repeatedly attacked Russia, or if this attack has something to do with Russia’s involvement in Iraq and Syria.

We can be sure, if it becomes clear that this was a terrorist attack, that Russia’s leader will signal that his country does not have tolerance for terrorism and his intentions to eradicate it from Russia’s midst. Time will tell if he is able to keep his promise this time.

The rest of the world watches the events unfold today and recognizes that the tide of terrorism is not ceasing. These sorts of attacks may continue for the foreseeable future if nothing is done.

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Emma Laftchu
I began reporting for RWC News on October 12th of 2016. Prior to that I was a reporter for WOKR Radio.

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