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Russia: 93 people killed, 145 injured in concert hall terrorist attack, 11 arrested

23rd Mar 2024
Russia: 93 people killed, 145 injured in concert hall terrorist attack, 11 arrested

By Elena Teslova

MOSCOW (AA):  At least 11 people, including four involved in Friday’s terrorist attack at a concert hall in Moscow region have been arrested, head of Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) Aleksandr Bortnikov has told President Vladimir Putin, according to the Kremlin.

Gunmen opened fire at concertgoers late Friday, killing at least 93 people and injuring 145 others. The attack took place as rock band Picnic was about to perform at the Crocus City Hall just west of Moscow. according to the Russian Investigative Committee.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the gun attack on the concert hall, according to news agencies.

IS fighters “attacked a large gathering… on the outskirts of the Russian capital Moscow,” the group said in a statement on the Telegram messaging app.

The IS statement said the attackers had “retreated to their bases safely.” reported AFP.

The FSB is working on identifying the accomplice base of the perpetrators of the terrorist attack in Crocus City Hall, the Kremlin press service quoted Bortnikov as saying on Saturday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has wished all those injured in the Crocus City Hall terrorist attack a recovery and conveyed compliments to medical staff, Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova said, reported Russian news agency, TASS.

“We together with [Russian Health Minister] Mikhail A. [Murashko] reported to the president on the state of health of patients, the president wished all a recovery and conveyed compliments to doctors,” she told reporters.

“According to preliminary data, as a result of the terrorist attack in the Crocus City Hall complex, 60 people were killed and 147 injured,” it said after multiple gunmen burst into the venue that is adjacent to the Russian capital.

The attack took place in Krasnogorsk, the administrative center of the Moscow region, where the music band Picnic was performing in the Crocus City Hall

The band was not injured in the attack, said law enforcement agencies.

An explosion was later reported at the venue that caused a large fire.

The Emergency Ministry said about one-third of the building was engulfed in flames, with helicopters trying to extinguish the blaze.

The number of injuries has differed in official sources. The Moscow region Health Ministry published a list of 147 people with wounds of varying degrees of severity. Russian Health Minister Mikhail Murashko said he was aware of 115 people who were injured and the Russian Emergency Ministry published a list of 99 people who were hospitalized after the shooting.

More than 30 regional ambulance crews and more than 20 Moscow ambulance crews have been sent to the Crocus City Hall, the Moscow Region’s health ministry said.

Firefighters have evacuated about 100 people from the basement of the burning building, and are now rescuing people from the rooftop.

Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin announced that all entertainment events in Moscow were cancelled for the rest of the weekend.

The Investigative Committee announced it launched an investigation into the “terrorist attack,” while Moscow’s special envoy for Ukraine said Russia will request a meeting of the UN Security Council.

US National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby said: “There’s no indication” that Ukraine was involved in the “terrible” attack.

In response, a Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson questioned the basis for Washington’s conclusions and said if the US “has or had reliable information in this regard, then it must be immediately transferred to the Russian side.”

Ukrainian authorities denied any involvement in the shooting, with the Foreign Ministry claiming the attack was a “planned provocation” to “fuel anti-Ukrainian hysteria in Russian society” and discredit Kyiv internationally.

Additional report by The Muslim News

[Photo: Working to extinguish the blaze continues at Crocus City Hall concert venue near Moscow, Russia after reports of a shooting incident on March 23, 2024. Photojournalist:  Ali Cura /AA]

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