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Kyrgyz Security Chief Blames Terrorist Group For Recent Bombings

Kyrgyz National Security Committee head Duishebaev
The chairman of Kyrgyzstan's state committee on national security, Keneshbek Duishebaev, said a group called "Zhayshul Mahdi" (Army of the Righteous Ruler) was responsible for a series of bombings in Bishkek, including one near a synagogue last autumn and one outside a sports complex, as well as a recent attempted bombing outside a Bishkek police station.

Duishebaev said the leader of the group, whom he identified as Sovetbek Islamov, was killed during a security operation.

Duishebaev said the group has 16 members: 15 Kyrgyz nationals and one Russian. He said of those, 11 are under arrest, two are dead and three are currently being sought.

Duishebaev showed journalists a videotape of one the defendants confessing to the bombings.

compiled from agency reports