The U.S. included the notorious leader of Chechen militants, Doku Umarov, on its list of terrorists, the U.S. Department of State said on Thursday.
Umarov, who styles himself as "the Emir of the Caucasus," has claimed responsibility for the two recent major terrorist attacks on the Russian territory — the Nevsky Express train bombing and the March 29 suicide bombing attacks in the Moscow Metro. He threatened further attacks.
"The Secretary of State has designated Caucasus Emirates leader Doku Umarov under Presidential Executive Order 13224, which targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism. This action will help stem the flow of financial and other assistance to Umarov," a State Department spokesman, Philip Crowley, said in a statement.
The Presidential Executive Order 13224 was signed on September 23, 2001, by then U.S. President George Bush. The 116-page document contains the list of terrorists and terrorist organizations, and allows to impose sanctions on them.
"The action taken today against Umarov supports the U.S. effort to degrade Umarov's ability to exert operational and leadership control over Caucasus Emirates," the statement reads.
"We are determined to eliminate the group's ability to direct violent attacks and to disrupt, dismantle, and defeat Umarov's network."
The high-speed Nevsky Express train derailed on November 27, 2009, killing 28 people and injuring over 90 en route from Moscow to St. Petersburg after a bomb equivalent to 7 kg (15 lbs) of TNT detonated on the track. A second, weaker bomb exploded at the site on Saturday, and is believed to have targeted investigators.
The attack on the Moscow subway occurred on March 29 when two suicide bombers blew themselves up during the morning rush hour at the Lubyanka and Park Kultury metro stations, killing 40 people and injuring over 100.
"The recent attacks perpetrated by Umarov and his operatives illustrate the global nature of the terrorist problem we face today. We stand in solidarity with the Russian people in our condemnation of these deplorable terrorist acts," the statement quotes Ambassador Daniel Benjamin, the Department of State's Coordinator for Counterterrorism, as saying.
MOSCOW, June 24 (RIA Novosti)