Russia says 'practically established' identity of metro bombing mastermind

Flowers are laid for victims of the metro blast in Saint Petersburg on April 5 -- but the city remains a tourist magnet
Olga MALTSEVA (AFP)
Local news agencies report that the FSB head did not clarify if it was an individual or group

Russia's FSB security service said Thursday that it was close to having identified who ordered the bombing on the Saint Petersburg metro earlier this month that killed 14 people.

FSB head Alexander Bortnikov told reporters that the identity had been "practically established," Russian news agencies reported.

It was not immediately clear if Bortnikov was referring to a group or an individual.

Authorities have attributed the attack to 22-year-old Akbarjon Djalilov, thought to be a Russian national born in Kyrgyzstan, who died in the blast. 

There has been no claim of responsibility but investigators say they are examining possible links to Islamic State jihadists.

The FSB has detained another man born in Kyrgyzstan on suspicion of helping orchestrate the metro bombing, who admitted to "some involvement" in the crime during a court appearance Tuesday.

Eight other people -- all from mainly Muslim Central Asian countries -- have also been detained in Moscow and Saint Petersburg over alleged involvement in the attack.

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