Chechnya suicide attack video released
The Russian authorities have released a video of the weekend suicide attack on police in Chechnya’s capital by the radicalised daughter of a pro-Kremlin politician.
Karina Spiridonova, 25, was wearing a black hijab and walked towards armed officers in Grozny (pictured), killing herself but failing to injure them.
She left a scrawled message to Allah saying “forgive me” 21 times. She was the daughter of a pro-Kremlin politician and lived 2,500km to the north of the Chechen capital, according to the authorities.
Strongman leader Ramzan Kadyrov, the head of the predominantly Muslim region, claims to have restored “calm and stability” in recent years as Chechnya recovers from two wars between 1994 and 2000.
But militants carry out sporadic attacks, mostly targeting military police.
In May three people were killed when attackers stormed an Orthodox church in Grozny.
In August extremists staged a series of attacks on police targets in Chechnya and so-called Islamic State claimed responsibility, without providing evidence.
The wider North Caucasus region is volatile with unemployment and corruption pushing young people to embrace radical Islam.
“Seeing her strange behaviour, officers on duty told her to stop and show her ID,” said Chechnya’s acting interior minister Alti Alaudinov.
“Instead of meeting the demand, the woman ran towards the checkpoint.”
A video shows her walking not running, giving the police time to shoot.
“The police officers noticed her wearing a suicide belt and at that moment they fired a warning shot,” he said.
“The young woman blew herself up.”
Her mother Elena Yumanova, 44, is a gym teacher and activist in President Vladimir Putin’s United Russia party.
Spiridonova once wore revealing western clothes and enjoyed parties but became radicalised after coming under the influence of an imam and meeting a mysterious man who she married two years ago, according to the media.
Sergey Grinin, chair of pro-government Civil Security, warned that so-called Islamic State was targeting “immature” young people “who can be zombified and whose life instincts are manipulated”.
Someone else was probably “orchestrating Karina’s actions”, he told the media.
“All suicide bombers are being followed and watched. Even if they decide to give up, somebody will push the button for them.”
Grozny. Picture credit: Wikimedia