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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

2 Detained In Sochi Bombings

Two suspects have been detained in connection with a series of deadly blasts over the past year in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, host of the 2014 Winter Olympics, investigators said Thursday.

A Sochi police officer and a local television cameraman have been detained on suspicion of involvement in bombings that left five people dead and 19 injured, the Investigative Committee said in a statement.

Explosive devices that detonated in Sochi from April 2008 through February have killed at least six people and injured 47. The Investigative Committee did not identify the suspects or specify which bombings they are believed to have been involved in.

The suspects are being investigated on suspicion of murder and attempted murder. If charged and convicted, they face up to life in prison.

Repeated calls to the press office of the Investigative Committee branch in the Krasnodar region went unanswered Thursday.

The Kremlin lobbied extensively for Sochi to host the 2014 Winter Olympics, with then-President Vladimir Putin making a personal pitch to the selections committee. Russia has portrayed its selection as a sign of its prestige, symbolizing an increase of its presence and influence on the international stage. The state has earmarked billions of dollars to prepare Sochi for the Olympics.

On April 26, Sochi will elect a new mayor who will have a strong say over how the government will spend the money. With two high-profile candidates having been thrown out of the race on technicalities, the election could turn into a face-off between United Russia candidate Anatoly Pakhomov and opposition politician Boris Nemtsov.

nA Krasnodar region court on Thursday upheld a ruling of a lower court striking wealthy businessman Alexander Lebedev from the Sochi ballot, Interfax reported.

The court upheld the lower court's ruling that Lebedev failed to properly fill out his registration paperwork.