Oct. 22, 2013 — -- Dashboard camera video captured a deadly bus explosion in Russia Monday that local authorities said was the work of a female suicide bomber, according to international reports.
The brief video, aired on Russian television, shows a city bus in Volgograd, formerly known as Stalingrad, traveling normally down a highway before suddenly exploding from the inside out. The bus disappears in a cloud of smoke and debris until it is seen a few seconds later, further down the road, stopped on the side. People then stream out of the bus and start running away.
Russian authorities said seven people were killed, including the bomber, and more than two dozen others injured. The bomber has been identified by the Russian Investigative Committee as 30-year-old Naida Asiyalova, from the Russian republic of Dagestan.
Asiyalova had been on a bus traveling from Dagestan to Moscow when she got off in Volgograd, according to the Investigative Committee. A spokesperson for the committee told reporters it is unclear if the bomb was meant to go off when it did, or if Asiyalova "changed her plan on her way, looking for the most crowded places," English-language RT reported.
Though no claim of responsibility has been made, Russia has been fighting a violent Islamist insurgency in the North Caucasus for years.
Suicide bombers, often female, from Chechnya or Dagestan and sometimes known as "black widows," have carried out many attacks on Russian targets in the past decade, including the dual bombing of the Moscow subway in 2010 that claimed 39 lives. Female bombers from the Caucasus were also blamed for the simultaneous bombing of two Russian airplanes in 2004, an attack that killed 90 people.
That the most recent blast was caught on dash cam is not necessarily an unusual phenomenon in Russia, where many drivers employ the on-board video cameras to protect themselves in court should they get into an incident on Russia's relatively lawless highways. Earlier this year a meteor shower in Russia was captured from several angles thanks to the cameras.
[Editor's Note: A previous version of this report mistakenly said Volgograd was formerly known as St. Petersburg. It was previously known as Stalingrad.]