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Europe

Second metro suicide bomber identified

Video by Kathryn STAPLEY

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-04-06

Russia said on Tuesday it had identified the second Moscow metro suicide bomber as a woman in her late 20s from the province of Dagestan in the volatile North Caucasus. She and another woman blew themselves up last week in the metro, killing 40.

AFP - Russia said on Tuesday it had identified the second Moscow metro suicide bomber as a woman in her late 20s from the province of Dagestan in the volatile North Caucasus.
  
"The terrorist who blew herself up at the Lubyanka metro station was Mariam Sharipova, who was born in 1982," a spokesman for Russia's FSB security service told AFP.
  
Sharipova was the wife of a top Islamist militant, Magomedali Vagapov, the spokesman said, quoting an official statement of the country's Anti-Terrorist Committee.
  
Other than providing the year of her birth, officials did not specify her age.
  
But Rasul Magomedov, a resident from the Dagestani village of Balakhani, told the opposition daily Novaya Gazeta in an interview published Friday that Sharipova was his daughter and gave her age as 28.
  
"My wife and I immediately recognized our daughter" after photographs of the severed heads of the two suicide bombers were published in Russian media, Magomedov told the paper.
  
Female suicide bombers whose husbands were killed by Russian forces have been dubbed "Black Widows", though there was no word on whether Sharipova's spouse was alive or dead.


Confirmation of Sharipova's identity came four days after investigators named the other attacker in the double metro suicide bomb attack as Dzhennet Abdurakhmanova.
  
The 17-year-old Abdurakhmanova, also from Dagestan, was the widow of another Islamist militant that officials said had been killed by security forces December 31.
  
The two young women blew themselves up on the packed Moscow metro last week, killing 40 people and wounding dozens in what became the deadliest suicide attacks in Russia for the past six years.
  
The Islamist group "Emirate of the Caucasus", which is waging an insurgency to impose an Islamic state based on sharia law in Russia's North Caucasus region, has claimed the Moscow attacks in a message from its shadowy leader.
  
That leader, Doku Umarov, said in a video posted on the kavkazcenter.com website that he personally ordered the Moscow strikes.
  
The main evidence in the investigation is the two bombers' severed heads which were recovered by police after the bombings. Their photographs covered in blood have been released in the media.
  
Sharipova lived with her parents and had since 2006 been teaching computer science in Dagestan, her father said in the newspaper interview, adding he had never noticed her express extremist views or show unusual behaviour even though she was religious.
  
"We still cannot believe this," Magomedov said.
  
Magomedov said he saw his daughter for the last time on March 26.
  
The bombings sent a chill across Russia, recalling the string of "Black Widow" suicide attacks carried out in Russia six years ago.
 

Date created : 2010-04-06

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