During the morning rush hour, Russian officials say that two suicide bombers set off explosions in two central Moscow subway stations. At least 35 are dead and over 100 are wounded; Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov said, "It was a terrorist act carried out by the female suicide bombers. They were specifically timed -- for ... the train was nearing the station -- to make the most damage." He added, "The blast was caused by 300 to 400 grams of explosives." The attacks have prompted the NYPD to step up security at various subway stations around the city.
The first explosion was in the Lubyanka station, where 23 were killed, and 40 minutes later, the bomb at the Park Kultury station killed 12. The NY Times reports:
Photos taken after the attacks showed scenes of devastation, with bodies strewn across subway cars and station platforms... Kirill Gribov, 20, a university student, said he was on a train that arrived at the Park Kultury station just as the suicide bomber detonated her explosive belt on the train across the platform.
“The explosion was so loud that we all were deafened,” Mr. Gribov said. “Then I remember a cloud of gas coming from the blown train in front of us, colored in pink, maybe because of blood. Some people were in panic, some stood still, but all of us somehow found our way outside the station. It was only at the street when I realized what had just happened. Mobile service was blocked, I couldn’t even call my parents, and I had to walk several kilometers because of the traffic.”
While BBC News reports, "The BBC's Richard Galpin in Moscow says no group has yet said it carried out the attacks, but past suicide bombings in the capital have been carried out by or blamed on Islamist rebels fighting for independence in Chechnya," CNN reports, "A Web site associated with Chechen separatists claimed responsibility for the attacks. Chechnya is located in an area of Russia known as the North Caucasus, located between the Black and Caspian Seas." Russian's intelligence agency seemed to support that, based on their investigation so far, "Fragments of the suicide bombers body found at the blast, according to preliminary findings, indicate that the bombers were from the North Caucuses region."
Last September, the FBI and NYPD uncovered a plot to allegedly bomb NYC's subway stations. Al Qaeda allegedly called off a 2003 plan to attack the NYC subway system with cyanide. And it was after 2005 subway bombings in the London subway system that prompted the NYPD to impose random bag checks.