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40 killed, more than 100 wounded in ‘terrorist attack’ in Russia

Russia

At least 40 people have been killed with over 100 others injured in a shooting and explosion at Moscow’s Crocus City Hall on Friday evening, according to the Russian Foreign Security Service.

The attack, which Russian authorities are investigating as terrorism, is the deadliest in Russia in recent years.

More than 70 ambulance teams were sent to the sight of the attack, the governor of the Moscow region reported.

Most of the building is engulfed in fire and the roof partially collapsed, Russian news agency Interfax reported. The attack was carried out by a group of up to five unknown people.

Several gunmen burst into the concert hall and opened fire with automatic weapons, state news outlet RIA Novosti reported.

Attackers then threw a grenade or incendiary bomb, starting a fire in the hall, according to Russian state media.

The White House is aware of the incident in Moscow but has limited information as of now, according to National Security Council Spokesperson John Kirby.

“The images are just horrible. And just hard to watch, and our thoughts, obviously, are going to be with the – the victims of this terrible, terrible shooting attack,” Kirby said.

Kirby also reiterated the State Department’s warning that all Americans in Moscow should avoid large gatherings, saying “They should stay put where they are, and stay plugged into the State Department for any additional updates and information.”

The U.S. Embassy in Moscow issued a warning on March 7, advising U.S. citizens to avoid large gatherings for 48 hours, saying extremists have “imminent plans” to target large-scale gatherings in Moscow.

The attack comes days after President Vladimir Putin cemented his grip on the country in a highly orchestrated electoral landslide.

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