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Russia demands extradition of Ukrainians, including head of SBU, after ISIS-K attributed terrorist attack

by The Kyiv Independent news desk March 31, 2024 10:10 PM 2 min read
A Russian law enforcement officer patrols near the Crocus City Hall concert hall outside Moscow, Russia, on March 23, 2024, after the terrorist attack that killed at least 139 people. (Stringer/AFP via Getty Images)
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Russia's Foreign Ministry called for the arrest and extradition of the head of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), citing the March 22 terrorist attack that has been claimed by an Afghanistan-based ISIS group, as well as other attacks.

Without providing any evidence, Russia's foreign ministry has been attempting to blame the terrorist attack on Crocus City Hall outside of Moscow that killed at least 139 people on Ukraine.

In its statement, the ministry said "all traces" of the attack led back to Ukraine, a claim that has been refuted by Ukraine and western intelligence.

Following the attack, the terrorist group Islamic State claimed responsibility for the mass shooting in a Telegram post. Kyiv has dismissed the allegations of its involvement and the White House said there was no indication that Ukraine was behind the Moscow attack.

The Russian Foreign Ministry also referenced the bombing of the Crimean bridge in 2022, which Vasyl Maliuk, the head of the SBU, has acknowledged was carried out by Ukraine.

"All targets hit by the SBU are completely legal," the SBU's Head Vasyl Maliuk told the Washington Post last year, without referencing specific incidents.

The Kremlin named other attacks in Russia, collectively calling these events terrorist attacks, and said it had submitted a request to Ukrainian authorities under international law for the extradition of all involved, though it did not name anyone apart from Maliuk.

In response to the Russian Foreign Ministry's statement, the SBU told Ukrainian news outlet Ukrainska Pravda that the accusations were “particularly cynical" against the backdrop of the anniversary of the liberation of Bucha, and noted that Putin himself was on an international watch list.

After Bucha was liberated at the end of March 2022, mass graves with civilians were discovered, and thousands of war crimes were documented, making Bucha a symbol of Russian atrocities in Ukraine.

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…
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