Andrew Osborn

 

 

Chief Russia Correspondent

 

Deputy Bureau Chief Russia/CIS

 

Reuters

 

 

Moscow bomber was 17-year-old 'bride' of extremist

The Daily Telegraph, 3rd April 2010 15:15

By Andrew Osborn in Moscow

ONE of the two "black widow" suicide bombers who killed 40 people on the Moscow metro was the 17-year-old lover of a dead Islamist rebel leader.

A photograph of the babyfaced teenager posing with her late "husband", emerged yesterday as she was confirmed as one of the attackers by Russia's national anti-terrorism committee.

The couple are shown clutching pistols. In another picture she has a grenade.

The girl, named as Dzhennet Abdurakhmanova, was from a small village in Dagestan, a volatile predominantly Muslim republic in southern Russia bordering Chechnya.

The local authorities there had already identified her as someone inclined towards extremism.

She met the leader of Dagestan's Islamist rebel underground, Umalat Magomedov, 30, over the internet when she was 16 and they were said by some to have been married.

It is understood he had effectively abducted her, a common practice in the region, and whether their marriage was official is unclear. Security officials said the singed remains of a love letter in Arabic had been found on what was left of Dzhennet's body at Park Kultury station where she killed 22 on Monday.

It apparently finished with the words: "We will meet in the Heavens."

Like many so-called "black widows" before her, her motive for turning herself into a human bomb would have been to avenge her partner.

He and three other extremists were killed in a shoot-out with police in Dagestan on Dec 31. Officers had stopped his Lada for a routine check. Dzhennet was brought in for questioning afterwards. Questions are likely to be asked about why police did not keep a better eye on her.

The FSB security service says Magomedov was close to Doku Umarov, the Chechenborn Islamist terrorist who has claimed responsibility for the Moscowmetro bombings.

Dagestan's Islamist extremists carried out a double suicide bombing that killed twelve people in the republic two days after the rush-hour Moscowbombings.

The identity of the second bomber, who blew herself up at Lubyanka station under the FSB headquarters, remains unconfirmed.

Video that was thought to show a bomber shortly beforehand up now appears to have been of a similar-looking member of the public.

Investigators say the bombers were accompanied by two men who may have detonated their charges by remote control though that remains to be confirmed.

Security sources believe the second woman was from Chechnya. At least two names have been suggested.

President Dmitry Medvedev continued to talk tough yesterday, suggesting stronger laws to make providing any kind of help, even providing a meal, a "full-blown crime".

"I believe that there should be no leniency," he said.

Bomber Dzhennet Abdurakhmanova with Umalat Magomedov. Inset: victims of her bomb at Park Kultury station