Suicide bomber kills at least 16 in Russia
Investigators and emergency ministry members work at the site of an explosion at the entrance to a train station in Volgograd on Sunday. A female suicide bomber blew herself up in the entrance hall of the Russian train station on Sunday, killing at least 16 people in the second deadly attack in the space of three days as the country prepares to host the Winter Olympics. (REUTERS/Sergei Karpov)
The station — a Stalinesque architectural monument with a clocktower and spire topped by a Soviet-style star — was busier than usual, with people travelling home for the New Year, one of the main holidays in Russia.
In the 1940s, Stalin ordered the deportation of tens of thousands of people from the region, including Chechens, to Central Asia on suspicion of harboring sympathies for Nazi Germany. Many thousands died in exile and transport.
It said authorities had identified her as a resident of Dagestan, the province adjacent to Chechnya and now the centre of a long-running Islamist insurgency, and the widow of two militants who were both killed by Russian security forces.
Interfax cited law enforcement sources as saying authorities believed the attacker was a man who brought a bomb into the station with a rucksack. Some bombs carried by female suicide bombers have been set off remotely by male accomplices.
"The threat is greatest now because it is when terrorists can make the biggest impression," he told Reuters. "The security measures were beefed up long ago around Sochi, so terrorists will strike instead in these nearby cities like Volgograd."
Markin said 16 people were killed in the attack, including two who died in hospital. A regional government official also put the toll at 16 and said that did not include the attacker.
The attack, just over two months after a female suicide bomber killed six people on a bus in the same city, raised questions about the effectiveness of security measures which the Kremlin routinely orders increased after bombings.
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