Putin Acknowledges 'Radical Islamists' Behind Moscow Shooting: 'But Who Ordered It'?

Written by Henrik Rothen

Mar.25 - 2024 8:37 PM CET

Foto: Screenshot
Foto: Screenshot
Putin now admits 'radical Islamists' were responsible, yet still implies Ukraine might have ordered it.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin has attributed a deadly attack on a Moscow concert hall to "radical Islamists," shifting the narrative from earlier suggestions of a Ukrainian connection. The Islamic State (IS) has claimed responsibility for the incident, yet Putin has intriguingly floated the possibility of Kyiv's involvement in orchestrating the violence against Russia.

For the first time, Putin openly declared to Reuters that the attack was the work of 'radical Islamists.' However, he simultaneously sustained the allegation that it might also be 'part of the Kyiv regime's assaults on Russia.' This claim has been vehemently denied by the Ukrainian government, with France and the USA also indicating intelligence that points towards IS's involvement.

"We know that this crime was committed by radical Islamists, whose ideology has been combated by the Islamic world itself for centuries," Putin stated in an AFP report, during a televised meeting.

Yet, Putin provocatively inquired who 'ordered' the attack, suggesting a deeper plot behind the tragedy, Reuters reported.

The Russian leader reiterated that the four main suspects were apprehended in the Bryansk region of western Russia, alleging they were en route to Ukraine.

"Of course, we must answer the question, why did the terrorists attempt to head to Ukraine after committing the crime? Who was waiting for them there?" Putin pondered.

Kremlin spokespeople had earlier refrained from commenting on any links to the Islamic State, with Putin not directly naming the group. Responsibility for the attack, which claimed 139 lives according to Russian authorities, was claimed by IS-K, or Islamic State-Khorasan. Emerging in eastern Afghanistan in late 2014, IS-K represents one of the most active regional branches of the Islamic State.

Four men, labeled as the main suspects, have been charged in connection to the attack, with three others accused of aiding their transportation. The assailants reportedly opened fire with automatic weapons on attendees at the Crocus City Hall in Krasnogorsk, on the outskirts of Moscow, before setting the venue ablaze, marking a tragic episode in the ongoing narrative of global terrorism.