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Attack in Moscow: Kremlin refuses to comment on ISIS’s claim in the attack and seeks to involve Ukraine

The Kremlin He refused on Monday to comment on the terrorist group’s claim ISIS-K of the attack during a concert in Moscow, in which 137 people died, while the investigation is underway.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his security services, the FSB, did not mention the group’s involvement this weekend and They targeted the Ukrainian runwaydenied by kyiv and Western governments.

At least 137 people died in the attack on Friday by a group of armed men at a concert at the complex. Crocus City Hallon the outskirts of Moscow, in the bloodiest attack on European soil claimed by ISIS.

“The investigation is ongoing and the presidential administration would be wrong to comment on the development of the investigation. we won’t do it“Russian presidential spokesman Dmitri Peskov told reporters on Monday.


The crime for which they are accused (group terrorist attack) carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

The ISIS group, which Russia fights in Syria and which is active in the Russian Caucasus, claimed responsibility for the attack, but Russian authorities have stated that The alleged murderers were trying to flee to Ukrainian territory after the attack.

kyiv, confronted by the Russian offensive for more than two yearshas firmly denied any involvement in the attack. The United States has also rejected the Russian president’s version.

Stuffed animals and flowers for the victims. Photo: EFE

Tough man image crushed

The Moscow-area concert hall attack that killed hundreds of people dealt a blow to President Vladimir Putin’s image as a tough guy capable of defending Russia from all threats. It came less than a week after a Kremlin-orchestrated election victory gave him six more years in power.

Putin quickly sought use the attack to serve their political objectives. In a television appearance on Saturday, hours after the attack, Putin alleged a link between the attackers and Ukraine, saying the attackers planned to flee there. He did not mention ISIS, which claimed responsibility, or kyiv’s denial of involvement.

Putin’s statement signaled an apparent intention to intensify the war and reinforce political repression in the country.

Kremlin critics attacked Putin for focusing Russia’s massive police and security services on quelling political opponents, human rights groups and LGBTQ+ activists, while leaving the country unprotected from threats from armed extremists.

If Putin continues to directly blame Ukraine for the attackwill probably use it as justification for even more ferocious attacks. Hours before Friday’s bloodshed, the Russian military unleashed a bombardment on Ukraine’s energy system, paralyzing its largest hydroelectric plant and leaving more than 1 million people without electricity. More bombings followed over the weekend.

Searching through the rubble

At the scene of the attack, investigators They continued searching through the rubble of the roomdestroyed by a fire started by the attackers.

The number of injured was 182, of which 97 were still hospitalized on Mondayaccording to authorities.

The Kremlin indicated on Monday that Putin will not visit the site of the attack.

Peskov on the other hand did not want to comment. accusations of torture of detained suspects, that emerged after videos were published on social networks and images where three of the four arrested appear with bloody faces.

The four accused with signs of beatings.  Photo: TATYANA MAKEYEVA and Olga MALTSEVA / AFPThe four accused with signs of beatings. Photo: TATYANA MAKEYEVA and Olga MALTSEVA / AFP

Another video, spread on the internet and whose veracity could not be confirmed, shows how a person off-screen cuts off the ear of one of the suspects in the attack.

At the suspects’ appearance in court Sunday night, one of them had a white bandage over one ear and another arrived in a wheelchair with his eyes closed. One seemed to be missing an eye.

One of the Russian opposition figures in exile, Leonid Volkov, denounced the attempt by the Russian security services to “divert attention from (his) impotence and (his) failure”, by showing these videos.

The authorities said they had arrested a total of 11 people, including these four alleged attackers. But the profile of the other detainees is not defined at the moment.

Death penalty for terrorists

The four individuals were placed in provisional detention on Sunday night, until May 22, pending trial, the date of which has not yet been decided. Accused of “terrorism”, They face life sentences.

Senior officials from Putin’s entourage urged in recent hours that the moratorium on the death penalty is lifted for the “terrorists.”


The crime for which they are accused (group terrorist attack) carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

The attack, which occurred a few days after Putin’s re-election and amid promises of security to the population after the intensification of Ukrainian attacks on Russian soil, It represents a hard setback for the president.

The attack is reminiscent of other terrorist acts during Putin’s first years in power, against the backdrop of the war in Chechnya: the hostage taking in the Moscow theater of Dubrovka in 2002 and the Beslan school tragedy two years later.

The fight against terrorism “needs full international cooperation,” Peskov said Monday, but this collaboration “does not exist”.

French President Emmanuel Macron assured that he proposed more cooperation to Russia on the issue, but asked not to “instrumentalize” the Moscow attack. Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk also asked that it not be used “as a pretext for an escalation of violence and aggression.”

With information from AFP and Associated Press

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