Islam Karimov (Vestnik.com)
That is, jihad in an Uzbeki market. From AP, :
An explosion has ripped through the Uzbek capital Tashkent, killing at least two people, the ITAR-Tass news agency reported.
The Uzbek Foreign Ministry has blamed terrorists.
Ministry spokesman Ilkhom Zakirov said that there were “several terrorist acts,” arrests had been made and an investigation was underway. He confirmed that there were casualties but could not give further details.
At least one of the blasts occurred around 9 a.m. (0400 GMT) at the Chorsu market in the Old City, said Alimzhon Turdakulov, spokesman for the National Security Service.
Russia’s Echo of Moscow radio, citing the RIA-Novosti news agency, said several people had been killed.
Police and intelligence agents closed off the sprawling market and vans with investigators were massed in front of the “Children’s World” store, where the blast was believed to have occurred.
There was no visible sign of an explosion from afar.
The market would normally be filled with thousands of people selling everything from goat meat to clothing to carpets. On Monday, however, only cleaning crews could be seen. No shoppers or vendors were visible.
Officials at the Interior Ministry refused comment on the attack. President Islam Karimov was scheduled to make a televised address to the nation about the attack at 1 p.m. (0800 GMT). Prosecutors were expected to hold a briefing later in the day.
Zakirov, the Foreign Ministry spokesman, tied the explosions to the recent train bombings in Madrid and with continuing turbulence in neighboring Afghanistan.
A series of near-simultaneous bombings in Tashkent in February 1999 were blamed on the terrorist group Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, which has been linked to the al Qaeda terror network.
Uzbek authorities said the blasts, which killed 16 people, were an attempt to assassinate Karimov.