CNN BREAKING NEWS
Explosions in Capital City of Grozny
Aired December 27, 2002 - 08:02 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: We go now to our breaking news. More on the story of the explosions in the capital city of Grozny in the Russian Republic of Chechnya.
Our Moscow bureau chief Jill Dougherty joins us.
She is live now from Russia with more on that -- Jill, hello.
JILL DOUGHERTY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Daryn.
Well, the reports that are coming in are very disturbing now. Apparently, we're being told by the Russian government that there was a ton of explosives that were used in this explosion. It looks as if there were two explosions, one, it's believed, came in a truck, a suicide bomber outside the main government building in Grozny. That created a hole in the ground that was 30 feet wide and 12 feet deep, very, very big. And basically it destroyed a lot of that building.
We are getting some pictures in. The latest reports of injured and dead are 20 killed and 40 wounded. But those numbers are not very stable at this time and we'll have to see as time goes on. The blasts occurred one half minute apart and it was believed, as I said, to be a suicide bomber hitting the main government building in Grozny.
That, Daryn, is one of the only buildings in Grozny that is really standing and in good shape. It was a new building and was the center of the Moscow based, the Moscow, pro-Moscow Chechen administration, obviously a target for any type of rebels who want to send a message.
The message the Russian government has been giving is that Chechnya is getting back to normal. But this is plenty proof that it is not.
Jill, I think went a lot of people hear about Chechnya, they're going to think about what happened within the last couple of months, that incident with the theater and all those people who were gassed in Moscow.
DOUGHERTY: Right. Well, you have that just literally what, about two months ago. There's been a pattern, you'd have to say right now. You had that, where 129 people died, actually from the effects of the gas, as you remember, that was used in that hostage taking. And then just the other day -- in fact, I think it was at the beginning of this week, the Russian police here in Moscow picked up two men, Chechens who had explosive material inside their belts and they also had a couple of grenades.
So there is concern that this, the, they have been promised, the Russian government has been promised that rebels are going to try to strike back and we're seeing at least now in Grozny a case where that absolutely happened.
KAGAN: Jill Dougherty in Moscow, thank you for the latest on that breaking news. We'll be back in touch with you throughout the morning.
TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com