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February 07, 2011

Caucasus Islamic Rebel Leader Claims Responsibility for Airport Bombing

An Islamic rebel leader in Russia's North Caucasus region claims he ordered last month's suicide bombing at a busy Moscow airport, killing 35 people.

Doku Umarov makes the claim in a video posted Monday on an Islamic rebel website.

The veteran Chechen rebel commander says the attack was aimed at what he calls the "chauvinist regime" of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

As the self-styled "Emir" of the Caucasus, Umarov wants to set up an independent fundamentalist Islamic state in the North Caucasus, which includes the mainly Muslim republics of Chechnya, Ingushetia and Dagestan.

In another Internet video posted Sunday, Umarov said Moscow faces a "year of blood and tears" if it does not give up control of region.

The January 24 suicide bombing at Moscow's Domodedovo airport killed 35 people and wounded about 150.

Russian investigators say the bomber was a 20-year-old man from the Caucasus, but have declined to give any more details.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.