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Three of the four suspects charged with carrying out the concert hall attack in Moscow that killed over 130 people have admitted guilt in a Russian court. The suspects are all citizens of Tajikistan and have been charged with committing a group terrorist attack resulting in death. The court ordered them to be held in pre-trial custody until May 22. Reports have emerged that the suspects were heavily bruised and tortured during interrogation by security services.

The attack on the Crocus City Hall concert venue, which has been claimed by an affiliate of the Islamic State group, is the deadliest on Russian soil in years. Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed that the suspects were captured while trying to flee to Ukraine, a claim that Kyiv has denied. As Russia observed a national day of mourning, events at cultural institutions were cancelled, flags were lowered to half-staff, and a makeshift memorial was created near the burnt-out concert hall.

Families and friends of the victims are still waiting for news of their loved ones as rescuers continue to search the damaged building. DNA testing is being used to identify the bodies of those killed, a process that will take at least two weeks. Witnesses of the attack described the tragic events and the uncertainty of not knowing the whereabouts of their missing loved ones. Despite frantic efforts to locate their family members, many are still without information and left waiting for updates.

Putin has described the attack as a bloody and barbaric act of terrorism. The suspects have been seen in videos and have claimed to have been paid to participate in the attack. U.S. intelligence officials have confirmed the IS affiliate’s claim of responsibility for the attack. The incident has raised questions about how such an attack could occur in a country that has heavily suppressed opposition activities and independent media.

The Islamic State group has a history of targeting Russia and has claimed responsibility for previous attacks in the region. The recent attack in Moscow is seen as part of the group’s ongoing war with countries that it deems as fighting against Islam. The Russian government and President Putin have vowed to bring those responsible to justice and have launched investigations into the attack. The incident has shocked the nation and raised concerns about the country’s security measures in place to prevent such attacks in the future.

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