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Islamic State releases photo of alleged perpetrators of Moscow shooting

by Martin Fornusek and The Kyiv Independent news desk March 23, 2024 8:28 PM 2 min read
Four alleged perpetrators of the Moscow shooting on March 22, 2024, in footage released by the Islamic State-affiliated Amaq News Agency. (The Khorasan Diary/X)
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The Islamic State released on March 23 a photo of what it claims are four attackers involved in a shooting near Moscow, Reuters reported, citing the Amaq News Agency affiliated with the terrorist group.

Several gunmen opened fire at the Crocus City Hall in Krasnogorsk, northwest of Moscow, on the evening of March 22, killing 133 people and injuring at least 140, according to the latest updates by the Russian authorities.

"The attack comes within the context of a raging war between the Islamic State and countries fighting Islam," Amaq said.

The Islamic State previously claimed responsibility for the attack in a post on Telegram.

The terrorist group has in the past claimed to be responsible for attacks it did not carry out. U.S. intelligence officials, however, confirmed the claim shortly after the post.

According to the Kremlin, a total of 11 people involved in the shooting have been detained, four of whom were called "the perpetrators."

A photo published by Amaq shows four men with covered faces, making their reliable identification difficult.

Russian independent investigative outlet The Independent noted that the clothes of some of the men seem to match those of alleged perpetrators detained by Russian security services, based on the footage that appeared on Telegram.

The Kyiv Independent could not verify the claims.

Putin seeking to blame Ukraine for Moscow shooting, despite ISIS taking responsibility
Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed that the detained suspected perpetrators of the Moscow shooting allegedly planned to flee to Ukraine without providing any evidence. In his address, the Russian president did not mention the fact that the terrorist group Islamic State (ISIS) claimed responsib…

Despite the Islamic State claiming responsibility for the attack, Russian officials are attempting to connect it to Kyiv without providing any evidence. Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed that the detained suspects planned to flee to Ukraine.

Andrii Yusov, a spokesperson of Ukraine's military intelligence agency, denied Russia's claims that seek to accuse Ukraine of involvement in the shooting.

"The version that the perpetrators of the terrorist attack were fleeing toward Ukraine does not withstand any criticism," he said on national television.

Ahead of the attack, the U.S. Embassy in Russia issued a warning on March 7 that "extremists have imminent plans to target large gatherings in Moscow" and urged American citizens to stay away from crowded areas and venues over the next 48 hours. The U.K., Canada, Germany, and several other countries published similar statements soon after.

Ukraine's military intelligence (HUR) called the shooting a "deliberate provocation by Putin's special services." HUR claimed the attack was intended to justify "even tougher" strikes on Ukraine and total mobilization in Russia.

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