Less than 24 hours after a suicide bombing at the train station in Volgograd, Russia, 14 people have been killed and 28 others have been injured in a suicide bombing of a bus in the same city.
The explosion was so powerful it blew out windows of surrounding businesses in the busy district of Dzerzhinsky near a market where people were shopping for New Year’s Eve. Only the metal skeleton of the bus remained after the blast.
“The explosives were detonated by a male suicide bomber, fragments of whose body have been found,” the Investigative Committee said, adding that the kind of explosive used showed the trolleybus attack and strike on the railway station were likely to have been connected.
“For the second day, we are dying – it’s a nightmare,” a woman near the scene said, her voice trembling as she choked back tears. “What are we supposed to do, just walk now?”
People in the city also received hoax bomb calls and they are doing business on foot instead of public transportation. Reports of bombs on other buses and vans were proven false.
The 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi begin in six weeks and there were already major security concerns. Months ago, Chechen leader Doku Umarov called for more attacks in Russia and mentioned the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi will be a target because it is on sacred ground for Muslims. In October, a woman used a bomb to blow up a bus in Volgograd. Six people, including a 20-month-old child, were killed and 30 were injured. Alexei Filatov, deputy head of the veterans’ association of the elite Alfa anti-terrorism, said there will be more attacks.
“The threat is greatest now because it is when terrorists can make the biggest impression,” he added in comments made yesterday.
“The security measures were beefed up long ago around Sochi, so terrorists will strike instead in these nearby cities like Volgograd.”
Volgograd is very significant to Russia and history. It used to be Stalingrad where the Russians inflicted a major loss to the Nazi army in World War II. It is also near the North Caucasus region and a top transportation spot between Moscow and southern Russia.