New twin suicide blasts rock southern Russia

09:44, April 01, 2010      

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Two blasts rocked Russia's North Caucasus region of Dagestan Wednesday morning, just two days after 39 people were killed in two subway explosions in Moscow, the region's Interior Ministry said.

The latest blasts happened in the town of Kizlyar, where 12 people, including the Kizlyar police chief and eight of his officers were killed, Vladimir Markin, spokesman for the Investigative Committee of Russian Prosecutor General's Office, told the Interfax news agency. Twenty-three others were hospitalized.

Meanwhile, a source in the Federal Operative Headquarters of the National Anti-Terrorism Committee told Itar-Tass on Wednesday that 11 people were killed and 28 were injured in the blasts.

Both Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said the suicide attacks on the Moscow metro system and in Dagestan were linked and vowed to track down and eliminate the terrorists responsible.

"The terrorists' goal is to destabilize the situation in the country, destroy civil society and spark fear and panic among the public," Medvedev said. "We will not allow this."

"As for the criminals, all of them will be found and eliminated," he said.

Putin was quoted by Russian news agencies as saying at a Cabinet meeting earlier Wednesday: "I don't rule out that this is one and the same gang."

"No matter in which part of the country these crimes have been committed, nor who have fallen victim to these crimes, we see this as a crime against Russia," the prime minister said.

Putin has previously vowed to "drag out of the sewer" the terrorists who planned the Moscow attacks, which injured more than 60.

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