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Explosion in St. Petersburg subway system kills 14 people, injures dozens more

An explosion at a subway station in St. Petersburg, Russia has killed 14 people according to state media.

At least 14 people were killed Monday in what the Russian General Prosecutor’s office is calling a terror attack in the St. Petersburg metro system.

According to the Russian anti-terrorism committee, at least one blast hit the Sennaya Ploshchad station on St. Petersburg’s blue line around 14:40 on Monday (12:40 GMT).

According to The Guardian, the device exploded in the third carriage from the front of the train just after it had left Sennaya Ploshchad station. To make evacuation easier the driver continued to the next station, Tekhnologichesky Institut.

Initial reports said explosions occurred at both the Sennaya Ploshchad and Tekhnologichesky Institut stations.

Russia’s health minister, Veronika Skvortsova, said 37 people were injured, at least six critically. The anti-terror committee updated the number of 45 people injured.
Earlier, the healthcare committee reported 25 people, including a child, were injured in the blast, but other reports said at least 50 people were hurt. The St. Petersburg governor said 22 people were sent to local hospitals.

A Rossiya-24 reporter said at least one device was “packed with shrapnel.”

Svetlana Petrenko, a spokesperson for the Russian Investigative Committee, said Tuesday that investigators are considering the possibility that a suicide bomber was responsible for the attack.

Petrenko said a man whose “fragmented remains” were found inside the train had been identified, but his information was not yet released to the media.

Earlier Tuesday, the national security service of Kyrgyzstan identified the suspect as a Kyrgyz-born citizen of Russia named Akbarzhon Jalilov. Petrenko later confirmed the report, adding that Jalilov was born in January 1995.

Another man whose photo was widely spread through social media turned himself in to police after he was erroneously identified as the suspect.

It is unclear if police are searching for an additional suspect. On Monday, the Interfax news agency said investigators were seeking a second person who planted a device at another station.

Police defused a second device found at the Ploshchad Vosstaniya metro station in St. Petersburg. Russia’s Federal Security Service said the recovered bomb also contained shrapnel, and the anti-terror committee characterized it as a homemade explosive.

Officials closed the entire St. Petersburg Metro system and locked down all 62 stations. Moscow is taking additional measures throughout the city’s subway and train systems.

A spokesperson said security measures are increased at St. Petersburg’s Pulkovo airport, including enhanced inspections on arrival.

Facebook activated its Safety Check feature for St Petersburg.

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