Caucasus Emirate leader takes credit for Moscow suicide attacks

Doku Umarov takes responsibility for the March 29, 2010, suicide attacks in Moscow.

The leader of the Caucasus Emirate has claimed responsibility for the March 29 suicide attacks in the Russian capital of Moscow that killed 39 people.

Doku Umarov, the emir of the al Qaeda-linked Caucasus Emirate, took credit for the suicide attack in a video released on the Internet. The video was published on Youtube by Kavkaz Center, the pro-jihadist website that focuses on the jihad in the Caucasus. Umarov previously described Kavkaz as “our Mujahideen website, the State website.”

Umarov claimed that the Moscow suicide attacks are “a retaliation and a retribution for the massacre by Russian invaders of the poorest residents of Chechnya and Ingushetia, who were picking wild garlic in the Arshty village on February 11, 2010, to feed their families,” according to a summary of his statement which was posted on Kavkaz.

In February, Russian security forces said they killed more than 20 of Umarov’s fighters during a raid on a terrorist camp in the village of Arshty, which is in a mountainous region in the Republic of Ingushetia near the border with Chechnya.

Umarov also reiterated today that his suicide bombers would strike deep inside Russia. He first made this claim in a statement that was published at Kavkaz in mid-February 2010.

Russians could no longer “idly watch the war in the Caucasus on their TV sets, watch it quietly, with no reaction to excesses and crimes committed by their gangs, which are being sent to the Caucasus under the leadership of Putin,” Umarov said in today’s statement.

“Therefore the war will come to your streets, and you will feel it with your own lives and skins,” he finished.

Umarov’s admission that his forces carried out the Moscow suicide attacks contradicts a prior statement in which he denied any involvement. Umarov previously told a Russian news channel that Russia’s Federal Security Service had carried out the attacks.

Umarov’s admission that he is responsible for the Moscow suicide attacks takes place the same day that two suicide bombers killed 13 people in the city of Kizlyar in Dagestan. Nine policemen, including the Kizlyar chief of police, were among those killed.

In early 2009, Umarov reestablished the Riyad-us-Saliheen, or Garden of Paradise, martyr brigade and re-launched a terror campaign in the Caucasus [see LWJ report, “Ingush President wounded as Caucasus Emirate revives martyrdom operations“].

Female suicide bombers from the Caucasus, known as Black Widows, have targeted Russian civilians and security personnel in multiple attacks, including: the attack on the Nord-Ost Moscow theater (129 killed); an assassination attempt against Chechen President Akhmad Kadyrov (14 killed); a suicide attack on a train in Southern Russia (46 killed); a dual suicide attack at a rock concert at Tushino Airfield in Moscow (16 killed); the destruction of two Russian airliners in 2004 (more than 90 killed); the attack on a school in Beslan in North Ossetia (334 killed); and the Moscow metro bombings (39 killed).

For more information on the suicide attacks in Moscow and Dagestan, see 13 killed in double suicide attack in southern Russia and ‘Black Widow’ female suicide bombers kill 39 in Moscow metro blasts

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.



  • DANNY says:

    Revenge? Wow what a law of islam breaker… wonder where he is going after he dies, letting all the killing aside, I mean?

  • BraddS says:

    The Russian commando teams are already deployed. His days are numbered, hopefully in the low single digits…

  • TMP says:

    Days numbered? Umarov has been hunted now for years….in fact Russia has claimed they have killed him numerous times…..He will survive another year more than likely…

  • TLA says:

    His beard isn’t pertinent enough to last very long.

  • A criminal system that works has to hold accountable those who planned and instigated the criminal attacks.
    I suspect that it can be shown that the armed jihad Russia is facing was planned and funded by certain nation(s).
    Here is some material from page 230 of my book (I wrote this for the jihad imposed on India):
    * publicize the documentation to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have been involved in the indoctrination of the local Muslim community from which terrorist acts originated.
    * use this documentation to bring crimes against humanity charges against these nations at the International Criminal Court.
    * demand compensation from these nations.
    * demand that Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, or other jihad-sponsoring nations require their leading clerics to tell Indian Muslims to deemphasize Islamic doctrine and to instruct Indian Muslims to stop further armed jihad.
    How India should escalate its response is detailed in my book.
    There is no reason why Russia could not do this.
    International law allows extreme response to acts of genocidal jihad.
    If 9/11 attacks constitute a “Black Swan” event for the western civilization, where is the corresponding one for the nations that have done most to create, sustain and fund worldwide jihad?

  • Jimmy says:

    Every act of terrorism in most parts of the world (India, Afghanistan, Russia, China, US, Europe, Isreal, Bangladesh) is sourced, financed, motivated, abetted, aided and planned from within Pakistan with the active knowledge and help from its Army and ISI. Yet the world cannot collectively corner Pakistan and demand it stop its henious crimes against the world.
    The US, Europe and China continue to give Pakistan billions of dollars of weapons and cash thus letting off the steam just when pressure is building on it. Diplomatic and monetary support from Arab countries is another let down. This is the reason India, Russia, Afghanistan and Isreal have to show liniency towards Pakistan.
    O World, wake up!! Lets all get toghether and corner Pakistan. Drag them to the international criminal court of justice for grave human rights violation and crimes against humainity. For once, lets hope the US and Europe will leave aside their selfish money mindedness aside and help the world bring this rougue criminal country to its knees – diplomatically, monetarily and if needed militarily. Only this will force Pakistan to stop its factory of Jihad.

  • Paul says:

    I fully agree with the previous poster.
    Saudi, Pakistan and Iran are the true AXIS of EVIL/Islam!

  • Benjamin S. says:

    “Fight them the same way they fight us” – I believe thats the rationale for justifying the Moscow attacks. He said those words almost one year ago if I remember correctly, when he first paved the way for the justification of killing civilians. Its possible he was waiting for an event like February’s mishap to take place and give him the greenlight to launch these attacks.

  • Graham says:

    As great as that sounds, Saudi Arabia is a massive oil-producing nation. They could probably just shrug off the allegations or bribe the ICC to drop charges.

  • Here’s an article on how Muslim populations are being systematically brainwashed into waging jihad or terror.
    By the way, Lashkar-e-Tayiba, quoted in this article, has a history of being funded by Saudi charities.
    “These [Muslim schools] institutions do not report to the Wakf Board and their syllabus is the same as the one followed in madrassas in Pakistan, say IB sources. The syllabus is based on the Anwar al-Awlaki school of thought, which has been adopted by Lashkar-e-Tayiba’s [ Images ] front organisation Jamat-ud-Dawa, and speaks of 44 different ways to perform jihad.
    At class V level in these madrassas, students are taught that Hindus helped the British set up their empire in India. In class 6 and class 7, the students are clearly told that there is no way in which they should reconcile with India, since the only way to attain total freedom is by fighting and becoming martyrs.

  • T Ruth says:

    Thanks for highlighting–ominous sign of the times and things to come.
    India can’t afford to sit around watching this mushroom around her. They will need fast legislation and ban every madrassa registered or not.
    In reality they will probably go the South Asian cultural way of procrastinating until they see a 9/11 scale attack that will make Bombay look like gatecrashers at a dinner party…
    Very sad and very disgusting.

  • Ruth:
    Thanks for the insightful observations.
    Let me diverge a bit here to talk about the way jihad is pripagated.
    There are, according to India’s former national security advisor, over 800 terror cells operating in India with “external support” (which means, likely funded and supported by Pakiastan, Saudi Arabia, UAE etc)
    India is a poorly governed country.
    If India continues to have a democratic form of governing, it will be destabilized beyond repair in a few years time and the arc of Af-Pak will extend through northern India and connect with Islamic Bangladesh.
    Islamic caliphate is well on its way. The caliphate is not just an aspiration of the Bin Ladens; its a primary vision of the Saudi–Pakistan clerical ruling class.
    More details in my book. But I have also outlined some ideas on how to neutralize this genocidal threat.
    I think LWJ should publish a primer on jihad in India. Study of jihad in India in itself is an illuminating course on jihadism and its propagation.
    Anyone reading my book will find compelling material that Pakistan and India are intimately interlinked. In my view, it doesn’t make much sense to talk about the threat of Pakistan without discussing jihad in India.

  • T Ruth says:

    Which is why, in South Asia, America has posited itself on the wrong side of history….
    There are also arcs that emanate from Afghanistan-Pakistan northwards to China and Russia, and eventually westward through the erstwhile Soviet-stans and into Europe.
    Pakistan is the hub that the US at its peril, and that of the free world, is willing to dance with. Islamism there should be smashed to smithereens. (History has done us a favour to give us a concentrated, homogenous, easily demarcated hub.)
    Political leaders around the world need to raise their sights and come together to eradicate this threat. All the more important, IF we are to minimise bloodshed and maximise the potential of smart-soft-power.
    To me this is WWIII. Agree that LWJ has an opportunity to contribute to a greater understanding of jihadism and its propagation, so sorely required. There is another level outside the dogmatic so-called think-tanks that are blinkered by the mundane.
    Just as we believe that the Af-Pak peoples and others need to better appreciate Western values of liberty and freedom, the West needs to better educate itself on what the other side wants since it doesn’t, anymore, come in a neat little package tied-up in red ribbons called Communism, not even really in China (whatever, thats a much easier debate, suddenly!).


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