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Moscow terror attack was severe blow for Russian Muslims – mufti

Those responsible for the Crocus City Hall massacre cannot be called believers, Russia’s top Muslim cleric has said

The aim of those who ordered the terrorist attack on the Crocus City concert hall outside Moscow was to spoil relations between Russia and the Islamic world, Russian Grand Mufti Ravil Gainutdin has said.

Gainutdin was speaking to the Rossiya 24 TV channel on Monday ahead of Eid al-Adha, or the Feast of Sacrifice, a major holiday celebrated by Muslims worldwide.

The March 22 massacre, which saw 145 people killed and more than 500 injured, occurred during the holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims pray and fast. The shooters were detained the next day while trying to flee to Ukraine by car, according to the authorities. More suspects were arrested in the following days.

The perpetrators were identified as nationals of Tajikistan, a Muslim-majority nation, the mufti said, adding that this has “shocked Muslims not only in Russia, but across the world.”

“The forces that demanded to carry out this terrorist attack precisely during the holy Ramadan, precisely with the hands of Muslim sons, were trying to spoil relations between Russia and the Islamic world,” Ravil Gainutdin said.

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FILE PHOTO: Soft toys and flowers left in front of the Crocus City Hall music venue outside of Moscow in commemoration of the victims of the terrorist attack.
Russia claims ‘significant evidence’ of Ukrainian involvement in Crocus terrorist attack

“The terrorist attack is a severe blow to the Russian Muslim community,” he continued, stressing that the people who committed the crime cannot be called believers.

The chief mufti said the Islamic world has always been seeking a world order in which sovereignty, traditions, culture, and state religions are respected. He claimed that the United States and its Western backers have long been attempting “to blow up the society from the inside” by creating an atmosphere where people of different religions, living in one country, are “at enmity between themselves.”

The jihadi group Islamic State Khorasan Province (ISIS-K) has claimed responsibility for the March, 22 atrocity. FSB chief Aleksandr Bortnikov, however, has suggested that the US, UK, and Ukraine may also be linked to the assault, possibly using the Islamists as proxies. Ukraine and its Western supporters have denied any involvement.

April 10, 2024 at 11:59AM

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