Just minutes after a suicide bomber killed 35 people at Moscow’s Domodedovo airport, Twitter users posted mobile video phone footage of victims lying on the floor as thick smoked filled the air and a fire burned along one wall.
Videos subsequently posted on YouTube showed airport staff using flash lights to help them navigate through the chaotic scene, while other footage captured emergency workers hurriedly evacuating the wounded on wheeled stretchers.
“Security will be strengthened at large transport hubs,” Russian President Dmitry Medvedev wrote on his Twitter account.
“We mourn the victims of the terrorist attack at Domodedovo airport. The organizers will be tracked down and punished.”
Although no group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack, dozens of apparent supporters praised the suicide bombing on an Islamist site known as kavkazcenter.com.
Meanwhile, Glen Howard, president of the U.S. Jamestown Foundation research institution, told Reuters that the terrorist attack did not “bode well” for Russian ties to the North Caucasus.
“[This] is yet another sign that what Putin started in 1999 by invading the rebellious republic of Chechnya has come home to roost again in the Russian capital.
“The bomb blast at Domodedevo will further strengthen the view among the Russian elite that Putin is losing control over security in the capital, which plays into the hands of his enemies.”