Putin’s statement, made in a New Year’s Eve address from the Siberian city of Khabarovsk, were his first public comments made since the Volgograd bombings.
VOA News cited a spokesman for Russia’s federal investigation agency who said the bomb in Monday’s explosion was similar to the one used in Sunday’s attack, reinforcing suspicions that the bombings may be linked.
Russia’s foreign ministry compared the attacks to similar acts of terrorism in the United States, Iraq, and Nigeria, and called for international solidarity in countering terrorism. This proposal would be regarded with immediate skepticism, however, by those in other countries who are well versed in the Soviet-Russian history of state sponsorship of terrorists, who often serve as mere surrogates of Moscow and Beijing.
The bombings increase the concerns of those responsible for the security of the Winter Olympics, which will be held from February 6-23 in Sochi, about 400 miles southwest of Volgograd. Islamist militants have threatened to attack civilians during the Winter Games.
VOA reported that Russia has implemented some of the most stringent security measures to be provided at any international sporting event in preparation for the Olympics. These include establishing a limited access security cordon around the entire city of Sochi and requiring spectators to carry accreditation documents that include passport data and contact information.
Britain’s Telegraph reported that during his New Year’s Eve address, Putin summed up the crisis: “In the past year we have faced problems and serious challenges including the inhuman terror attacks in Volgograd and unprecedented disasters in the Far East.”
Continuing his remarks, Putin said: “Dear friends, we bow our heads in memory of the victims of these terrible attacks. We will strongly and decisively continue the battle against terrorists until their total annihilation.”
Click here to read the entire article.
Photo of Vladimir Putin: AP Images