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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Rebel Group Says It Staged Metro Blast

A previously unknown Chechen rebel group said in a statement that it conducted a bombing on the Moscow metro last month that killed at least 40 people.

The Kavkaz Center web site, which normally publishes statements from rebel warlord Shamil Basayev, who has organized a string of suicide bombings against Russian targets, said it did not know who stood behind the group.

The Gazotan Murdash group sent the statement to the web site three times -- first on Feb. 8, two days after the bombing -- and then phoned the publishers before the site agreed to publish, Kavkaz Center said.

"Our first operation was successfully conducted on Feb. 6 on the Moscow metro," the statement said, saying it was revenge for an alleged atrocity by soldiers in Grozny exactly four years before the metro blast. According to human rights group Memorial, 46 people died when troops stormed through the Alda suburb in February 2000.