Russian court sentences militant to 10 years prison

Reuters News
Posted: May 19, 2012 5:40 AM
Russian court sentences militant to 10 years prison

MOSCOW (Reuters) - A woman convicted of planning to carry out a suicide bomb attack during 2010 New Year's Eve celebrations in Moscow's Red Square has been sentenced to 10 years in jail, Russian investigators said on Friday.

The plot was foiled after another suicide bomber was killed by explosives that accidentally detonated in her hotel room only hours before the planned attack.

Investigators said Zeynap Suyunova fled Moscow for the southern city of Volgograd after the hotel room blast damaged the explosives she planned to set off close to the to the Kremlin.

"On January 2, 2011, after her documents were checked by police the city of Volgograd, she was sent to Moscow, where she was then detained," said a statement from the Investigative Committee, a body that answers only to President Vladimir Putin.

"A court judgment sentenced Suyunova to 10 years imprisonment." It did not say when she was sentenced.

More than 10 years after federal forces toppled a separatist government in Chechnya, Moscow is still fighting an insurgency that aims to create an Islamist state across the entire North Caucasus region.

The separatist Caucasus Emirate, headed by Russia's most wanted man, Chechen-born Doku Umarov, claimed responsibility for a deadly bomb attack in Moscow's busiest Domodedovo airport carried out weeks after the New Year's Eve plot failed.

A newspaper reported last year that the blast in the hotel was possibly set off by the bomber's cell phone when she likely received a message wishing her a happy new year hours ahead of the attack.

Investigators said the bomb plot had been masterminded by Ibragimkhalil Daudov, a leader of the Caucasus Emirate in Russia's Dagestan region, who was killed earlier this year.

(Reporting By Thomas Grove; Editing by Myra MacDonald)