The Chairman of the Investigative Committee of Russia reports to the President of the Russian Federation on the progress of the criminal investigation into the incident on Crimean Bridge

During a working meeting with the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin, Mr. Alexander Ivanovich Bastrykin, Chairman of the Investigative Committee of Russia reported on the progress of the criminal investigation into the accident on Crimean Bridge.

Mr. V.V. Putin: Alexander Ivanovich, I know that the investigators of the Investigative Committee have been working all day on the investigation of the accident that took place early yesterday morning on Crimean Bridge. The preliminary data from the investigation is already available, so could you please report on the results.

Mr. A.I. Bastrykin: Dear Vladimir Vladimirovich, our team of the Main Investigative Directorate detectives, forensic experts and criminologists arrived at the scene urgently. Together with the explosives experts and criminologists they thoroughly examined the scene of the accident and made preliminary, substantiated conclusions.

We launched a case in accordance with the second part of Article 205 "Terrorism", and this is confirmed by the data of the initial stage of the investigation. Many bystanders and eyewitnesses were interrogated, special expert studies were conducted and most of them, including explosive, genetic, forensic examinations, are now finalized. The FSB and the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia received appropriate instructions to carry out investigative-search activities.

We already established the route of the exploded truck: Bulgaria, Georgia, Armenia, North Ossetia, Krasnodar Krai. In addition, the couriers have been identified - individuals involved in organizing the transportation. With the help of the FSB officers, it became possible to identify suspects, who may have prepared the terrorist attack and persons who operate on the territory of the Russian Federation.

Additionally, we continue the expert research in terms of clarifying the goals and objectives of the above mentioned explosion. It definitely has a terrorist nature. This is an act of terrorism. All the initial stage of the investigation data that we have today allows us to draw a firm conclusion - this is a terrorist attack prepared by the Ukrainian Special Services, and the purpose of this terrorist attack was to demolish a large civilian infrastructural facility, which is very important for the Russian Federation, especially for Crimea.

Mr. V.V. Putin: I understand.

According to your reports, there is no doubt that this is a terrorist attack aimed at destroying the major important civilian infrastructure of the Russian Federation.

Mr. A.I. Bastrykin: Absolutely right.

Mr. V.V. Putin: And the perpetrators, performers, and organizers are the Special Services of Ukraine.

Mr. A.I. Bastrykin: Ukrainian Special Services and citizens of Russia and foreign countries who helped in the preparation of this terrorist act.

Mr. V.V. Putin: Thank you.