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YEKATERINBURG, April 5. /TASS/. Investigators in West Siberia have rejected media reports on their role in dismissing Russia's Bashkiria resident Andrei Nikitin after published photos showed him as a suspect in the St. Petersburg subway blast, senior assistant to the local investigative branch’s head Alina Nikiforova told TASS on Wednesday.
"This information has nothing to do with reality. Investigators have not turned to Nikitin’s employer in Nizhnevartovsk," she said.
Some media outlets reported earlier that Andrei Nikitin, a native of the Republic of Bashkortostan, had been dismissed by his employer in Nizhnevartovsk at the request of the Russian Investigative Committee’s investigation branch for the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Area in West Siberia. It was also reported that air passengers refused to travel aboard the same plane with Nikitin, even though he had come to a local police station himself to prove his non-involvement in the St. Petersburg subway terror attack.
The bomb in the St. Petersburg subway went off at 14:40 on April 3 between the Tekhnologichesky Institut and the Sennaya Ploshchad stations. Russia’s Investigative Committee has qualified the blast as a terror attack.
According to the Health Ministry’s latest data, the blast killed 14 people while 49 persons remain in hospitals.