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    Over 3.5 million people attend night Easter service in Russia

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    Over 3.5 million people attended the night Easter service in Russia, with about 114,000 police and interior troops providing public security during the festivities, the Interior Ministry reported on Sunday.

    Over 3.5 million people attended the night Easter service in Russia, with about 114,000 police and interior troops providing public security during the festivities, the Interior Ministry reported on Sunday.

    Russia is celebrating Easter, the most important and joyful feast for Christians, when the Church commemorates the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

    "Security was provided by about 111,500 police and almost 2,500 interior troops," the ministry said, adding that no serious breaches of public order were registered during the celebrations.

    Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, who heads the Russian Orthodox Church, led the Easter service in downtown Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral. Some 5,000 people, including President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, attended the service.

    "Let the joy of this bright Paschal night that has touched our hearts stay as long as we can hold it," Kirill said following the four-hour service.

    Security measures were especially tight in Moscow and other large cities following recent terrorist attacks in the Moscow subway.

    On March 29, twin blasts in Moscow's Lubyanka and Park Kultury subway stations occurred during the morning rush hour, leaving at least 40 people dead and dozens injured.

    Chechen militant leader Doku Umarov claimed responsibility on Wednesday for the metro attacks, saying in a video message that the attacks were retaliation for operations carried out by federal security forces in the North Caucasus. He also pledged further attacks.

    MOSCOW, April 4 (RIA Novosti)

     

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