Russia says it foiled terrorist attacks in Sochi

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MOSCOW (AP) — Russia’s secret service said Thursday it had foiled terror attack plans in the Black Sea resort of Sochi ahead of the 2014 Winter Olympics.

Russia’s National Anti-Terrorist Committee said the secret service agency FSB discovered 10 caches of ammunition that included portable surface-to-air missiles, grenade launchers, flame throwers, grenades, rifles and explosives.

The ammunition was found on May 4 and 5 in Georgia’s breakaway republic of Abkhazia, a region that has declared independence and has strong links with Russia.

The FSB said it suspects the attacks were being masterminded by Doku Umarov, a Chechen rebel leader, whom it claims has close ties to Georgia’s secret service. Mr. Umarov claimed responsibility for the 2011 deadly bombing in a Moscow airport that killed 35 people.

Officials in Georgia were not immediately available to comment. Georgia and Russia, both former Soviet republics, had a brief but intense war in 2008 and are still very distrustful of each other.

Sochi’s selection as the host of the 2014 Winter Games initially sparked fears of possible terrorist activity at Olympic sites.

Russia’s volatile North Caucasus region is plagued with near-daily violence linked to an Islamist insurgency that spread from the province of Chechnya to neighboring areas in the late 1990s. Although Sochi has been spared from terrorist attacks so far, it is still located in the same region as the North Caucasus republics.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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