Mary Chastain writes: Russian authorities are searching for 22-year-old Ruzanna Ibragimova, a “Black Widow,” who may already be in Sochi for the 2014 Winter Olympics. They believe she may have infiltrated the security President Vladimir Putin brags about on a regular basis.
She is the widow of a terrorist reportedly killed last year in a shoot-out with police, Ibragimova goes by the nickname Salima and has a 10-centimeter scar across her left cheek, Russian authorities said. She also walks with a pronounced limp and has a stiff left arm that doesn’t bend at the elbow, authorities said.
Black Widows reside in Chechnya, and their husbands died during previous terrorist attacks against Russian forces during the two Chechen wars. These women step up and take their husband’s or another close male relative’s place.Naida Asiyalova detonated a bomb on a bus in Volgograd in October, which killed six people and injured over 30 people. A suicide bomber blew up a train station in Volgograd in December, but there are mixed reports if the bomber was male or female.
At least 15 people have been killed in a trolley bus blast in Volgograd, emergency services report, only a day after a suicide bombing ripped through the city’s railway station, killing 17.
Monday, December 30
“The emergency services have reacted very swiftly. All those injured have been taken to hospitals, as their identities are being determined,” he said.
05:37 GMT: According to witness reports to ITAR-TASS, there were many students on the bus.
“There was a loud ‘pop’, then a flash, everything was enveloped in smoke,” one female witness said, describing the sudden realization.
05:34 GMT: The Investigative Committee now puts the number of injured at 15.
05:30 GMT: In describing the character of the blast, ITAR-TASS law enforcement sources have said that it appears to be a suicide attack, “judging from the body fragments characteristic of such a bombing.”
Simon Shuster reports: Naida Asiyalova, the suicide bomber who blew herself up on Monday on a crowded bus in the Russian city of Volgograd, killing six people and wounding dozens more, was born in the town of Buynaksk, a huddle of mosques and squat apartment blocks in the foothills of the Russian Caucasus. For at least a year, the town has been under a so-called KTO regime, the Russian acronym for counter-terrorism operation, which allows security forces to conduct random searches, impose curfews and detain any foreigners who do not carry a special visitor’s permit, as happened to me this spring. At the checkpoint leading into town, the troops who stopped me could not say exactly how long the counter-terrorism operation had been going on. “A long time,” one of them said with a sigh. “Probably a couple of years. You should have known about it.” And when would it be over? “Not soon. Not with the Olympics coming up.” Read the rest of this entry »