Incident Summary:

05/17/2011: On Tuesday morning at 0930, in Aktobe, Kazakhstan, a suicide bombing was carried out outside a government office building that housed the regional department of the National Security Committee (NSC). The attack wounded two bystanders and caused an unknown amount of property damage to the building. The bomber was identified as Rakhimzhan Makhatov. Kazakh prosecutors said it appeared that the bomber had ties to organized crime but not too radical Islamic groups and that Makatov could have blown himself up to avoid responsibility for a number of crimes he had committed as a member of an organized criminal group. The Prosecutor General's Office insisted that the explosion was not a terrorist attack. The Muslim Spiritual Board of Kazakhstan, however, has not ruled out a radical religious motive for the attack saying that even though there is no information confirming the incident as religiously motivated, there are no precedents in their history for such attacks. Furthermore, Kazakh political analyst Dosim Satpayev also supported a religious motive for the attack saying that criminal organizations rarely use this form of activity and that the target of the attack was a building housing the Kazakh secret services which combats extremism and terrorism. No group claimed responsibility for the attack.

GTD ID:
201105170015

When:
2011-05-17

Country:
Kazakhstan

Region:
Central Asia

Province/administrative
region/u.s. state:

Aktobe

City:
Aktobe

Location Details:
The attack took place at a local police headquarters in the city of Aktobe, Kazakhstan.

Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Bombing/Explosion
Successful Attack? (more) Yes
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Police
Name of Entity National Security Committee
Specific Description A local police headquarters housing the National Security Committee (NSC)
Nationality of Target Kazakhstan
Additional Information
Hostages No
Property Damage Yes
Extent of Property Damage Minor (likely < $1 million)
Value of Property Damage Unknown
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Explosives/Bombs/Dynamite Suicide (carried bodily by human being)
Weapon Details
A suicide improvised explosive device was used in the attack.
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?Yes
Part of Multiple Incident?No
Criterion 1 (more) No
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Doubt Terrorism Proper (more) Yes
Alternate Designation (more) Other Crime Type
Additional Information The Prosecutor General's Office insisted that the explosion was not a terrorist attack. The Muslim Spiritual Board of Kazakhstan, however, has not ruled out a radical religious motive for the attack saying that even though there is no information confirming the incident as religiously motivated, there are no precedents in their history for such attacks. Furthermore, Kazakh political analyst Dosim Satpayev also supported a religious motive for the attack saying that criminal organizations rarely use this form of activity and that the target of the attack was a building housing the Kazakh secret services which combats extremism and terrorism.
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Unknown No
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators 1
Number of Captured Perpetrators 0
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 1 Fatalities / 2 Injured
Total Number of Fatalities 1
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 1
Total Number of Injured 2
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
Sources
"Andrew E. Kramer, "Kazakhstan: Suicide Bomber Strikes," LexisNexis Academic, New York Times, May 18, 2011."
"Russia & CIS Military Newswire, "Muslim Spiritual Board not Ruling out Radical Religious Groups' Role in Aktobe Blast," LexisNexis Academic, Russia & CIS Military Newswire, May 20, 2011."
Kazakhstan General Newswire, “Kazakhstan Muslims Suspect Involvement of Radical Religious Groups in Aktobe Suicide Bombing,” LexisNexis Academic, Kazakhstan General Newswire, May 20, 2011.