MOSCOW, December 30, 1:10 /ITAR-TASS/. Sixteen people died in a terrorist act committed at the railway terminal in Volgograd on Sunday, and 37 injured people, among them two children aged 9 and 14, remain in hospital. A Health Ministry source said six injured people are to be brought to Moscow for treatment.
Vice-Premier Olga Golodets and Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova are expected to arrive in Volgograd shortly. Upon arrival, they will immediately go to one of hospitals where those injured are staying.
Vladimir Markin, spokesman of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation (SKRF), told Itar-Tass that the criminal case concerning the terrorist act would be investigated by the Main Inquiry Directorate of the SKRF. This was ordered by SKRF Chairman Alexander Bastrykin.
Ten victims of the blast have been identified, among them seven men and three women.
A mourning for the victims of the tragedy has been declared in Volgograd Region from January 1 to 3, 2014.
According to preliminary data, the blast was set off by a female suicide bomber. A forensic genetic expert examination has been ordered to identify the bomber. However, investigators are busy verifying an avenue of inquiry that the terrorist act was committed by a man.
Russia's President Vladimir Putin commissioned the chiefs of security organizations to ensure safety on transport and the facilities of the transport infrastructure of the country, presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov told the Russian News Service (RSN). "Vladimir Vladimirovich (Putin) was immediately notified about what happened in Volgograd. All the necessary instructions have been already issued by the President. Those concern, first of all, instructions to agencies and the leadership of the region to give immediate assistance to those injured, including their transportation to the medical establishments of Moscow," Peskov specified.
Peskov said, "Putin assigned ministers and chiefs of security-related organizations to take all necessary measures to establish causes and circumstances regarding the terrorist act, expose and bring to trial those who stand behind it".
Members of the United Russia (URP) faction in the State Duma lower house of the Russian parliament are to discuss Monday possible amendments to legislation in view of the terrorist act in Volgograd, said Vladimir Vassiliyev, House Deputy Speaker and lesder of the URP faction.
LDPR leader and House member Vladimir Zhirinovsky insists on an "all-out tapping" of all residents of Russia's south. At the same time Pavel Krasheninnikov, Head of the State Duma Committee on Civil, Criminal, Arbitration and Procedural Legislation, told Itar-Tass that in order to fight terrorism it is essential first of all to enhance the training of special services, as well as strengthen inter-agency interaction of law enforcement organizations.
The leaders of many countries and international organizations have condemned the terrorist act in Volgograd and expressed condolences to the relatives and next-of-kin of those killed and injured in the terrorist act.