Mass casualties in Russia after Metro blast.
By: (MEE) At least nine people were killed and 20 injured in explosions in a train carriage at metro stations in St Petersburg on Monday, Russia’s national anti-terrorist committee said.
Interfax news agency quoted an unnamed source as saying the blast was caused by a bomb filled with shrapnel. Another source in Russia’s emergency services told Reuters there had been only one bomb blast.
“There was one blast in one site in between (stations) as the train arrived at the Technology Institute station from Sennaya (Ploshchad) station,” the source said.
Russian media reported earlier that there were two blasts and that at least 10 people had died.
President Vladimir Putin, who was in St Petersburg for a meeting with Belarussian leader Alexander Lukashenko, said the cause of the blasts was not yet clear and efforts were under way to find out. He said he was considering all possibilities including terrorism.
No individual or group has claimed the apparent attack.
Video showed injured people lying bleeding on a platform, some being treated by emergency services. Others ran away from the platform amid clouds of smoke.
A huge hole was blasted in the side of one carriage with mangled metal wreckage strewn around the platform. Passengers were seen hammering at the windows of one closed carriage.
Authorities closed all St Petersburg metro stations. The Moscow metro said it was taking unspecified additional security measures in case of an attack there.
Еще одно видео pic.twitter.com/D8KRYZSfXd
— RTVi (@RTVi) April 3, 2017
Russia has been the target of attacks by Chechen militants in past years. Chechen rebel leaders have frequently threatened further attacks.
At least 38 people were killed in 2010 when two female suicide bombers detonated bombs on packed Moscow metro trains.
Over 330 people, half of them children, were killed in 2004 when police stormed a school in 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.
Putin, as prime minister, launched a 1999 campaign to crush a separatist government in the Muslim majority southern region of Chechnya, and as president continued a hard line in suppressing rebellion.
— Rudaw English (@RudawEnglish) April 3, 2017