ISIS-K planned to target “a crowded shopping mall” after the deadly shooting at the Crocus City Hall, Hurriyet reports Flowers and toys are placed on the roadside in front of the burnt-out Crocus City Hall following a terrorist attack on the concert venue in Moscow Region, Russia. © Sputnik

Turkish intelligence warned Russia of a second terrorist attack intended to follow the deadly massacre at the Crocus City Hall outside Moscow this spring, Hurriyet reported on Tuesday.

The attack on the venue took place in late March when a group of armed men – later identified as ethnic Tajiks – stormed the venue ahead of a rock concert, killing 145 people and injuring more than 500 others. It was the deadliest act of terrorism in the country since the early 2000s.

Russian officials said the attack was prepared, financed, and coordinated by the Islamic State-Khorasan (ISIS-K) terrorist organization, but claimed that the group was used by Ukraine as a proxy. Kiev has denied any involvement.

Hurriyet noted that Türkiye has long been on the lookout for threats posed by ISIS-K. Ankara’s special services also identified and questioned numerous persons of interest in the aftermath of an attack on a Catholic church in Istanbul in late January, establishing contact with the Russian side on the matter.

Ukrainian spies involved in Moscow terror attack – FSB chief Ukrainian spies involved in Moscow terror attack – FSB chief

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Ukrainian spies involved in Moscow terror attack – FSB chief

The paper said two of the culprits who carried out the Crocus City Hall attack had resided in Moscow for a long time and had on numerous occasions briefly entered Türkiye to extend residence permits, adding that Russia was notified of this.

By interrogating the captured ISIS-K members, Türkiye learned that “the terrorist organization had planned a second attack after the first attack on the concert hall,” Hurriyet said, adding that Ankara told Moscow that the organization was planning to target “a crowded shopping mall.”

The head of Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB), Aleksandr Bortnikov, previously said that before the Crocus City shooting, Moscow was warned by the US about an impending terrorist attack, but the information was “general” in nature. He said Russia “had taken appropriate measures” to prevent terrorist attacks, noting that they targeted a certain group of individuals, and that “information did not check out at the time.” (RT)