At least 32 people
were killed Dec. 27 when two suicide bombers drove trucks into the
Chechen government compound in the regional capital of Grozny and
detonated them, according to press reports.
Minister Ruslan Tsakayev said the bombs were contained in a truck
and an off-road vehicle that broke into the government compound. Authorities
still were trying to determine the number of casualties, which he
characterized as "significant."
federal authorities and legislators have warned recently of terrorists
using trucks for deadly missions. Last week, Sen. Charles Schumer
(D-NY) wrote the Transportation Security Administration, worried that
fuel-laden trucks carrying hazardous materials are a potential weapon
the federal government needs to more closely regulate.
In a statement,
Schumer said, "Today, if terrorists wanted to do something horrible
to us, chances are they could take a truck with dangerous materials
in it, drive it to a major landmark, ignite the cargo right there
and cause unspeakable damage."
In the Chechen
explosion, authorities said the larger truck exploded next to the
building, while a smaller vehicle blew up in an adjacent parking lot
used by government cars. The explosions had the force of one ton of
TNT and left a 20-foot-wide crater, authorities said.