Explosion again shakes Tashkent area

In an apparent continuation of a series of terrorist attacks, a State Auto Inspection post in the Kirai district of Tashkent Province was bombed this morning. Early reports said there were several injured and that an exchange of gunfire had taken place near the bombed post between militia officers and a still unidentified person. The area has been cordoned off, Rosbalt learned from police sources.

Only yesterday, Tashkent was rocked by an explosion and then, shortly afterward, the government announced that Bukhara had been hit by two terror attacks. In all, 19 deaths were attributed to the bombings, and 26 other people were injured. A special commission was immediately formed to investigate and is headed by Islam Karimov, Uzbekistan's president. It includes the heads of the republic's prosecutor's office, Interior Ministry and all security services. Eleven suspects are in custody.

Unprecedented security measures have been implemented in Tashkent: access to the city has been placed under strict control, and the streets are being patrolled by militia and army troops. All pre-schools have been closed.

The Russian Foreign Ministry issued a statement condemning the bombings. 'While absolutely condemning these criminal acts, we are emphasizing that these tragic events once again demonstrate that there are neither geographic, nor political, nor even religious criteria for terrorists,' the ministry's official spokesman, Aleksandr Yakovenko, declared. 'This makes clear the need for further consolidation of nations and peoples in the struggle with international terrorism.'

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