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22 Mar, 2024 17:29

Mass shooting and explosion reported at concert hall near Moscow

Footage emerging from the Crocus City Hall shows the landmark venue on fire and numerous dead bodies at the scene
Mass shooting and explosion reported at concert hall near Moscow

A renowned Moscow Region concert venue and shopping center caught fire on Friday evening, following reports of a mass shooting incident.

At least three gunmen wearing combat fatigues burst into the Crocus City Hall and fired automatic weapons, injuring dozens of patrons and killing a significant number of them, according to Russian media.

Some media outlets report that 40 people were killed and more than 100 were injured as a result of the shooting. No official confirmation has been issued yet.

Press outlets report the use of explosives and a video shows black smoke rising above the building. TASS news agency has said that up to a third of the huge complex has been engulfed in flames.

The agency added that special forces soldiers from the Russian Guard have arrived at the location. There are also unconfirmed reports that helicopters have been sent to extinguish the blaze.

“We were sitting in the center of the hall. The concert began, just a couple of minutes passed, one or two grenades exploded in the middle, gray smoke started pouring out. Panic began,” an eyewitness told RIA Novosti.

Warning! These videos include disturbing imagery.

Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin has ordered city services to provide all necessary assistance to everyone who has been injured. He expressed condolences to the relatives of those killed.

The Crocus City Hall is located in Moscow Region, just outside the administrative boundary of the Russian capital. The complex includes a concert hall, an aquarium, and a wedding venue, along with many shops and restaurants.