Minsk Explosion

April 11, 2011 by staff 

Minsk Explosion, The explosion reportedly occurred at 5:56 pm in the downtown Kastrychnitskaya (Oktyabrskaya) of the station, said Bélap.

Witnesses said the explosion occurred after two opposition trains stopped at the station.

It was not immediately clear whether the blast occurred inside a train car or platform.

Alexander Lukashenko personally examined the scene. The Belarusian leader convoy reached the area about two hours after the accident.

Mr. Lukashenko was left there for minutes and then, according to government sources, went to an emergency conference of government.

The rush hour blast in the capital of Belarus, which occurred in Oktyabrskaya station – just 100 meters from the administration of President Alexander Lukashenko.

There has been no official confirmation whether a bomb or an accident caused the explosion.

However, a police spokesman in the city of Minsk said he had been placed on “high alert.”

“We’re looking at all possible versions of what happened,” he said.

Lukashenko has visited the site of the explosion and called an emergency meeting of key ministers.

A witness said a train had been pulling the station when the bomb exploded on the platform.

“The doors (the train), opened and then there was an explosion,” said the witness.

“I saw people lying on the floor without moving. There was a lot of blood.”

Political tension has been high in Belarus since the December elections gave Lukashenko a fourth term in power, to the dismay of the opposition and the West, which denounced the vote as fraudulent.

A police crackdown on an opposition rally against the December vote has led to sanctions by the West, including a travel ban on the president and his closest associates.

In July 2008, a homemade bomb sprayed the nuts and bolts into a crowd at an outdoor concert in Minsk attended by Mr Lukashenko. About 50 people were injured.

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