On January 24th at 4:32PM local time, an explosion occurred at the Domodedovo Airport – approximately 25 miles southeast of Moscow – resulting in at least 31, and possibly as many as 35 deaths and 130 injuries. Reports suggest that the blast occurred near a café outside of the international arrivals section, destroying a baggage claim area. Initial media reports and government statements indicate that the blast was likely the result of a suicide bombing, and one unidentified law enforcement source said that the explosive device contained the equivalent of at least 7 kilograms (approximately 15 pounds) of TNT. Domodedovo Airport is Russia’s largest and busiest hub, particularly for international travel, with more than 20 million passengers having travelled through there in 2010.
Although a group has not yet claimed responsibility for the attack, the Islamic Emirate of the Caucasus led by Doku Umarov has launched terrorist attacks in the past – including the March 29, 2010 Moscow Metro bombings – and threatened additional attacks in Russia going forward. Terrorists from the Caucasus have also targeted Russia’s aviation industry, with the most notable incident being the August 24, 2004 simultaneous bombings of two planes in midflight after they departed Domodedovo Airport. The attacks – which were launched by two female suicide bombers – killed 90 people.
Source: NYPD Counterterrorism Bureau