Law enforcement agencies are now searching for the criminals that, on the night of 14-15 September, committed armed assault on a patrol police officer and, later, on the Atyrau City Police Headquarters. The official statement of the Oblast Internal Affairs Department so far does not give the full picture of the event...
So, on September 14, at 23.52, the City Police HQ received an information about a patrol officer shot by two perpetrators at the Issatai-Makhambet Square. The officer, wounded in his knee cap with a shotgun, was operated in the Oblast Hospital.
Apparently, the attackers acted by a clean scheme: right after the first shots echoed around, all units free of patroling rushed from the HQ to the central square to rescue their colleague. (Even running the distance between the two locations takes few minutes). After 18 minutes a white car pulled into the HQ area through the rear gate and gunmen opened fire upon the officers on duty.
According to an unofficial information, the duty officers escaped into the building and the attackers followed them to enter the headquarters. When inside, they threw a petrol bomb towards the inner identity check point and wounded a soldier of Troops Unit 5546. Shouting 'Allah Akbar' the assaulters exited the building and left the scene making another couple of shots.
Today, the investigation of this bold attack is complicated by that the car of the assaulters was only seen by one camera, located at the top floor of a neighboring building. Unfortunately, the video gives poor view of the car model, presumably, it is either Nexia or Vaz-2115. Therefore, police launched an interception operation - they are now stopping and checking all similar vehicles and taking fingerprints of the drivers, obviously, in order to check with the database of usual suspects.
An officer of law enforcement bodies, unofficially, added some facts to the story of his colleague about the events of the Sep 14-15 night.
He says it was a well planned operation with involvement of up to 8 terrorists in 2 cars.
The first attack on a patrol police vehicle took place at the Issatai-Makhambet Square right by the apartment block behind the large TV screen. A white Daewoo Nexia, with 4 people inside, parked there. Two of the passengers got out of the car and stood watching out for the most advantageous position to assault the patrol unit - the camera of the neighboring bank spotted the car and its passengers.
Fire wallop on the patrol vehicle lasted for about a minute. Its crew included a sergeant and a probationer who run away after the first shots. The sergeant received a wound in his leg, but kept shooting back. Soon the reinforcement, that he had requested himself, arrived and the attackers rushed to escape to the direction of the Tuberculosis Hospital in the Chornaya Rechka (at the Uralsk Highway) being chased by the newly arrived police vehicles.
Meantime, another light motor car parked in front of the City Police Headquarters, putting down four armed men. Shouting 'Allah Akbar!' and 'All cops must die!' (in Russian) they threw several explosive devices towards the building entrance and opened fire upon running away officers.
Without obstacles, they came in the building and threw an explosive device to the dispatch room and another onto the stairs leading to upper floors. Then, the assaulters came by the door opposite, the rear entrance, and threw an explosive device onto the parade ground. By the way, later, several unexploded self-made bombs in plastic bags were found inside the building.
Witnesses claim the attackers had Kalashnikov assault rifles, delivering steady fire - the entrance hall of the building has been completely shuttered. That night, two automatic gunmen should have been on duty. Service investigation to find out the reason they did not respond to the attack is in process. The assaulters successfully left the scene before the police units that had been chasing the Nexia and had urgently rushed back after hearing about the attack on their central office, arrived.
By Murat SULTANGALIYEV
Message from editors: Some visitors of our website believe that civilians may not worry about the recent events, claiming the terrorist actions, that took place over the last two years, are only aimed against officers of force structures. Such an indifferent position is very comfortable, especially, when a commenter is in safety, sitting at the computer. In fact, the guys with bombs leave no choice neither to themselves, nor the people. We are no longer spectators, but hostages of the situation. No matter how we criticise police and special services for their mistakes, except them, there is no one who may protect us from terrorism.