Anti-Putin partisan ‘black bridge’ set Russia’s FSB building on fire

Smoke from fire rises above a building of Russia's Federal Security Services (FSB) in the southern city of Rostov-on-Don on March 16, 2023. A fire tore through security service offices in a southern region of Russia bordering Ukraine. STRINGER/AF/Getty Images

A Russian anti-Putin partisan movement called Black Bridge has claimed responsibility for last week’s fire at a building used by Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) in the southern city of Rostov-on-Don near the Ukraine border.

Black Bridge, one of several partisan movements in Russia, called the FSB “a stronghold of hypocrisy, violence and injustice” in a Telegram post on Monday about the March 16 blast and blaze.

At least four people were reported killed and five were wounded in the fire that broke out at the building belonging to the FSB, whose roles include internal security and counter-terrorism in the country. The security service issued an official statement saying fuel and lubricants had caught fire in a workshop, which caused an explosion and the building’s partial collapse.

Black Bridge said that the fire broke out due to an improvised explosive device, which was placed in a container of fuel.

“It is the employees of this structure that fabricate criminal cases against objectionable people, squeeze business from entrepreneurs, arrange sabotage against civilians, torture oppositionists and physically eliminate ‘competitors,'” the group said in a statement.

“Since the beginning of the events in Ukraine, none of the partisans has paid due attention to the attacks on the buildings of their department or on the representatives of the special services themselves.”

Black Bridge said the act of arson on a military enlistment office, for example, cannot be compared “in efficiency and resonance” with significant damage caused to a Kremlin building, or the killing of an individual “who is an employee of the office.”

“I appeal to all those who are not indifferent, those who are ready to resist the regime with radical methods and are already doing this—switch to more serious goals,” the group said. “Do not be afraid. Let the action of direct action, committed in Rostov-on-Don, serve as an example for you and motivate you to new achievements, even more large-scale ones.”

Partisan groups including Black Bridge have claimed responsibility for attacks within Russia after President Vladimir Putin announced a full-scale invasion of neighboring Ukraine last February.

Molotov cocktails have been thrown into military enlistment offices, railways have been sabotaged to block the transportation of military equipment in Ukraine, and there has been a string of mysterious fires in the country.

Another Russian partisan group, the National Republican Army, claimed responsibility for the killing of Daria Dugina, daughter of Aleksandr Dugin, a Russian ultranationalist, in August 2022.

The Black Bridge network describes itself as a movement that opposes Putin, Russian authorities and the war in Ukraine.

On its Telegram channel, the group says it’s “a non-existent structure without participants who do nothing for the revolutionary partisan movement to grow and develop in Russia, which, as everyone knows, does not exist and cannot be.”

The group has spoken out against the Kremlin throughout the conflict, calling itself “part of new Russian resistance who decided to fight instead to ‘freeze’ or ‘run.'”

© 2023, GDC. © GDC and Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.