Sat, 08 Aug 2020

Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) has detained two teenagers in the city of Saratov on suspicion of plotting a deadly gun-and-bomb attack in a local school amid a rise in school-shooting cases in the country.

The FSB said on February 26 that the two teens, both born in 2005, were members of online groups propagating mass killing and suicide.

According to the FSB, a sawed-off shotgun was confiscated from the boys, who also planned to make explosives using manuals available online.

The FSB also made public videos showing the two boys during questioning, where one of them says they planned the attack as 'revenge.' It did not elaborate.

One boy said that he did not care how many people might be killed in the attack, while the other said he planned to kill at least 40 people and that the attack was planned for May.

Last week, the FSB said that its officers had prevented a school attack in the city of Kerch in Russia-controlled Crimea, while a court in the far eastern city of Khabarovsk sentenced a teenager to eight years in prison after convicting him of a planning a school shooting.

Historically, attacks at schools in Russia and other former Soviet republics are uncommon. However, in recent years they have been on the rise.

The latest occurred at a college in the far eastern city of Blagoveshchensk in November. One student was killed before the shooter took his own life.

In October 2018, an 18-year-old student killed 20 people in a gun-and-bomb attack in a college in Kerch before fatally shooting himself.

In April 2019, a court in the Urals city of Perm sentenced a 17-year-old to seven years in prison after finding him guilty of a knife attack in January 2018 at his school that left 12 people hospitalized with stab wounds.

Also in January 2018, a ninth-grader attacked fellow students with an ax and other weapons in the Siberian region of Buryatia.

In April 2018, a teenager in the Russian region of Bashkortostan entered his school and stabbed a female student and a teacher before setting a classroom on fire. Another girl sustained serious injuries when she fled by jumping from a second-story window.

With reporting by Interfax and TASS

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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