35 killed as blast rocks Moscow's main airport

35 killed as blast rocks Moscow's main airport

Russian news agencies, citing witnesses, said the airport’s halls were filled with so much smoke that it was difficult to count the dead. A video posted online showed bodies and luggage strewn across the smooth airport floor, barely visible under the clouds of thick smoke.

The blast occurred in the arrivals hall of Domodedovo airport, according to a spokeswoman. Investigators said the explosion occurred at 4:32 pm local time. Sergei Lavochkin, who was at the airport meeting a friend, said he was 100 feet away when the bomb detonated. “I heard a loud bang, and some tiles fell from the ceiling,” Lavochkin told Rossiya-24, a cable news service. “I saw carts, the ones you use to move luggage. They were transporting people on them.” An eyewitness who gave his name as Yuri said the intense blast sent roughly 200 people scrambling for safety.

“There were many people; if I were two metres to the side I would have been badly hurt,” he told the news channel Pervy Kanal. “There was a bang, and all I remember is that the shock wave pushed me to the floor. My hat flew away, and I put my jacket over my head. Five seconds later, when the smoke cleared, I saw people running out.”

Irina Tsvei, who was at the airport for a flight to Geneva, told the news channel that she saw the wounded being carried out of the airport and that the surrounding roads were jammed with ambulances and fire trucks.

In televised remarks,  Russian president, Dmitri A Medvedev, said: “At Domodedovo an explosion has occurred, and according to preliminary information it was a terrorist attack. There are dead and there are wounded.”

He admonished officials for their failure to prevent the attack, and ordered the police to boost security at all airports and on public transportation. International arrivals were being diverted to nearby airports, according to local news media reports.

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