ISIS Claims Responsibility For Moscow Shooting That Left 40 Dead

Published 19 days ago
By Forbes | Antonio Pequeño IV
Iran-Reaction, Shooting At The Crocus City Hall Concert In Moscow
People are placing flowers outside the Russian embassy in Tehran, Iran, on March 24, 2024, to honor the victims of a shooting at the Crocus City Hall concert venue in the Moscow Region. (Photo by Morteza Nikoubazl/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

TOPLINE

The Islamic State group took responsibility for a Friday attack on a Moscow area concert hall that left at least 40 dead and about 100 injured, according to multiple outlets, a claim confirmed by U.S. officials and Russian media.

KEY FACTS

A branch of ISIS based in Afghanistan and known as ISIS-K claimed responsibility for the shooting in a statement made on Telegram and published by ISIS-affiliated news agency Amaq, CNN reported.

U.S. officials confirmed the ISIS connection to the New York Times, noting U.S. intelligence members collected evidence in March that the ISIS branch was planning an attack on Moscow and that ISIS members have been active in Russia.

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Russia’s foreign ministry called the shooting a terrorist attack, according to ABC News, which noted a U.S. official said they see no reason to doubt ISIS’ claim of responsibility.

The shooting reportedly took place around 8 p.m. local time and was conducted by at least five gunmen in camouflage who opened fire on concertgoers in attendance for a show by Russian rock band Picnic.

TANGENT

The U.S. Embassy in Russia issued a warning two weeks ago urging Americans to avoid large gatherings in Moscow, citing reports of extremist plans to target such gatherings.

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SUPRISING FACT

The incident is the largest terror attack in Central Russia in terms of victims since the 2011 Domodedovo airport bombing, according to ABC. The bombing killed 37 people and injured 172.

KEY BACKGROUND

“ISIS-K has been fixated on Russia for the past two years,” Colin P. Clarke, a counterterrorism analyst at the Soufan Group, told the New York Times, adding the branch group has accused the Kremlin of spilling Muslim blood through its interventions in Afghanistan, Chechnya and Syria. Friday’s attack comes less than a week after Russian President Vladimir Putin appeared to secure reelection after dominating the polls.

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