Russia arrests two suspected ‘terrorist’ recruiters

russia-arrestSAINT PETERSBURG: Two suspected recruiters of “terrorists” from Central Asia were arrested in Saint Petersburg, justice authorities said on Saturday, in connection with a deadly bomb attack on the Russian city’s metro.

One suspect, aged 32, is accused of recruiting for the Islamic State group, while the other, aged 39, faces allegations of being a recruiter for “terrorist organisations in Syria”.

One of the two is from the Osh region of Kyrgyzstan, an area known for the number of recruits it has provided for Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.

Fourteen people died and dozens were injured in the April 3 blast which has been blamed on 22-year-old Akbarjon Djalilov, thought to be a Russian national born in Kyrgyzstan, who died in the blast.

There has been no claim of responsibility for the attack but investigators say they are probing possible links to Islamic State jihadists.

Eight people — all from mainly Muslim Central Asia — have been detained in Moscow and Saint Petersburg over alleged involvement in the attack.

As of the beginning of April, police in St Petersburg had arrested seven nationals of Central Asian countries on suspicion of being “terrorist” recruiters.