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The death toll in Friday’s terror attack on a concert in Moscow has risen to at least 133 people, with 11 suspects apprehended, four of whom were directly involved in the onslaught. President Vladimir Putin declared a day of mourning for the victims and condemned the attack as a bloody, barbaric terrorist act. Additional security measures have been implemented throughout Russia following the deadliest attack in over 20 years.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the deadly attack, with the U.S. intelligence community confirming that the ISIS affiliate in Afghanistan, known as Islamic State Khorasan or ISIS-K, carried out the assault. This is the same group responsible for killing 13 American service members at Abbey Gate during the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2021. The White House and National Security Council condemned the attacks, attributing sole responsibility to ISIS and denying any Ukrainian involvement. However, Putin suggested a possible Ukrainian link to the violence, which Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy denied.

The surprise attack at Crocus City Hall in the city of Krasnogorsk involved gunmen bursting in, opening fire on concertgoers, and setting off smoke bombs and explosives inside the venue. Russian media reported that the building caught fire, leading to many being trapped inside. The roof of the theater collapsed as firefighters fought to extinguish the flames. Putin stated that the attack was carefully planned, involving individuals who provided transportation, escape routes, and weapons to the perpetrators. The FSB noted that weapons used in the attack had been placed in a cache in advance.

The FSB stated that the attack was meticulously planned, with weapons cached in advance by the terrorists. The agency initially blamed Ukraine for the attack, as four suspects were stopped near the border with Ukraine, but later ISIS claimed responsibility. Zelenskyy denied any Ukrainian involvement, criticizing the potential increased militarization and propaganda surrounding the incident. U.S. intelligence collected evidence in March that ISIS-K was planning an attack in Moscow, prompting a public advisory to U.S. citizens in Russia. Secretary of State Antony Blinken condemned the attack and expressed condolences to the families of the victims.

The attack occurred shortly after Putin’s re-election and amidst ongoing conflict in Ukraine, marking the deadliest attack in Russia in years. Putin wished a speedy recovery to the injured and commended medical staff for their efforts. Russian special services continue to conduct search operations, with mass events in Moscow canceled in the following days. Authorities are working to identify the entire terrorist support base, including those who provided assistance to the perpetrators. The tragic event highlights the ongoing threat of terrorism and the need for increased security measures to protect innocent civilians.

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