A powerful explosion has devastated a crowded market in Russia’s north Caucasus, killing at least 15 people according to the prosecutor’s office, and wounding several dozen more.
It happened in Vladikavkaz, the capital of North Ossetia at one of the busiest times of the day.
Investigators believe it was a suicide attack.
North Ossetia is a predominantly Orthodox Christian province, but its neighbours in the area include the volatile Muslim regions of Chechnya, Ingushetia and Dagestan where there’s an ongoing Islamist insurgency.
Amid the chaos friends and relatives helped tend to the injured, reported by one Russian news agency to number more than 60.
There has been relatively little violence in North Ossetia since more than 300 people died in the Beslan school siege in 2004.
The prosecutor’s office said that the market blast was consistent with 30-40 kilos of high explosive.
Windows all around were blown out.
Fire crews dealt with two blazing cars at the entrance to market.