ISIS claims responsibility for Moscow concert hall shooting after gunmen opened fire on venue

22 March 2024, 22:31 | Updated: 23 March 2024, 01:19

Russian ex-president Dmitry Medvedev said those responsible should be “found and ruthlessly destroyed”.
Russian ex-president Dmitry Medvedev said those responsible should be “found and ruthlessly destroyed”. Picture: Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for a shooting which has seen at least 60 killed after gunmen open fire at a concert hall near Moscow on Friday.

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Four gunmen dressed in camouflage reportedly burst into the Crocus City Hall in Krasnogorsk on the edge of Moscow on Friday evening, spraying visitors with automatic gunfire.

Russia's Foreign Ministry described the incident as a 'terrorist attack'.

The Islamic State has since claimed responsibility for the apparent terror attack on its Telegram Channel, Reuters reports.

While the claim has not yet been verified, ISIS have previously carried out attacks at a number of countries and also claimed responsibility for ones that it has had nothing to do with.

Just earlier this month, the FSB said it prevented an attack on a synagogue in Moscow that was being planned by an Islamic State cell.

The Russian national guard said that the search for the attackers remains ongoing.

It comes after Russian ex-president Dmitry Medvedev said in a statement on Telegram that those responsible should be “found and ruthlessly destroyed”.

The search for the attackers remains ongoing.
The search for the attackers remains ongoing. Picture: Alamy
More than 100 people have been injured in the shooting.
More than 100 people have been injured in the shooting. Picture: Alamy

Footage taken at the scene of the shooting shows dozens of people taking cover in the hall while gunshots can be heard firing in the background.

The attackers threw explosives which also caused a huge blaze at the concert hall, with Russian media reporting that the venue’s roof was collapsing.

Around a third of the building had been set alight, according to a Tass state news agency.

Evacuations were carried out but an unknown number of people may have been trapped in the blaze, according to reports.

Russia’s top investigative agency said it is investigating the incident as a terrorist attack.

Russia's Federal Security Service, the FSB, said in a statement: "All possible measures are being taken to provide assistance to those affected as a result of the terrorist attack in the Crocus City Hall.

"The special services are carrying out active search measures following the emergency in the Crocus complex.

"According to preliminary information: 40 dead and over 100 wounded."

At least 60 have been killed in the attack.
At least 60 have been killed in the attack. Picture: Alamy
Explosives used by the attackers set the building alight.
Explosives used by the attackers set the building alight. Picture: Alamy

Images taken at the scene of the attack shows a huge blaze alight at the building with clouds of billowing smoke.

Other footage shared by Russian media and Telegram channels show two men with rifles moving through the venue’s mall with long rounds of gunfire heard in the background.

Russian authorities said security had been tightened at the airports and railways stations in Moscow.

President Vladimir Putin is receiving regular updates on the incident at Crocus City Hall, Kremlin spokesman  Dmitry Peskov said.

He said: “Vladimir Putin was informed about the beginning of the shooting in the first minutes of what happened in Crocus City Hall.”

White House national security adviser John Kirby said there was no indication that the Ukraine had any involvement in the incident.

Russia said if the US was sure that Ukraine was not involved it should share any information it had with them.

Ukraine's presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak said Kyiv had nothing to do with the attack."Let's be straight about this: Ukraine had absolutely nothing to do with these events," Mr Podolyak said.

"We have a full-scale, all-out war with the Russian regular army and with the Russian Federation as a country. And regardless of everything, everything will be decided on the battlefield."

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