Beauty queen & young married couple among Moscow terror attack dead as Russia enters ‘day of mourning’ 133 victims

A FORMER beauty queen and a young couple married were found to be among those brutally gunned down in the Moscow massacre on Friday.

Russia is entering a day of mourning after the horrific terrorist attack that left 133 people dead.

East2WestEkaterina Novoselova, a former beauty queen, was killed in the attack[/caption]

East2WestYoung couple Pavel Okishev, 34, and his wife photographer Irina Okisheva, 33, also died[/caption]

ReutersRussia have entered a national day of mourning for the 133 killed[/caption]

ReutersPeople are laying flowers at a makeshift memorial[/caption]

Footage showed masked gunmen storming the Crocus City Hall on the outskirts of Moscow

On Friday evening at least four gunmen stormed the Crocus City concert hall in on the outskirts of Moscow during a rock show by the band Picnic.

Pageant-winning beauty queen, Ekaterina Novoselova, was listed among the dead by the Russian Health Ministry.

The 42-year-old won contests in 2001 in her native Tver, and lived recently in Moscow.

Pavel Okishev, 34, and his wife photographer Irina Okisheva, 33, were also killed.

Russia is weeping today after Putin declared 24 hours of mourning for the victims of Russia’s worst terror attack in 20 years.

Hundreds of flowers have been laid as the grief-stricken nation tries to come to terms with the horrific massacre.

Pictures show makeshift memorials springing up around the country paying tribute to the men, women and children who perished.

Teddy bears and other tributes have been placed as citizens wiped away tears

Another victim mercilessly murdered was mum Viktoria Ladeishchikova who was just 46 years old.

Ladeishchikova, originally from the Sverdlovsk region of Russia, had a daughter and loved yoga.

Irina Firsova, a 52 year-old Russian history teacher originally from Saransk, was also killed.

And Roman Sokolov, 47, tragically died on his birthday and was a graduate of the Moscow State Technical University for Civil Aviation.

Another victim was Natalia Zudina, 44, a graduate of the Ural State Economics University, originally from Yekaterinburg.

Alexander Semenov, 45, also perished. He was a director general of a company producing building materials.

It comes as it was revealed a hero schoolboy, 15, rescued 100-plus terrified people from the Moscow bloodbath, guiding them down emergency exit.

As terrorists started shooting concert-goers, 15-year-old Islam Khalilov was working in his part-time job as a cloakroom attendant at the venue.

Because he was familiar with the building he knew the emergency exit route and guided terrified people to escape unhurt, saving dozens of lives.

The boy is seen guiding the terrified crowd out via an emergency stairway.

“That way, that way, that way,everybody go that way.” he shouts.

Khalilov said:  “At first we heard some strange sounds on the first floor.

“We thought maybe some noisy group had come.”

ReutersThe memorial is set up outside the Crocus City Hall concert venue[/caption]

ReutersMemorials are springing up around the country for people to pay their respects[/caption]

ReutersHundreds of flowers and teddy bears have been left for the victims of the attack[/caption]

Then he saw people start fleeing in terror.

The brave youngster saw a man being shot in front of him – and knew he had to help people escape.

“I understood that if I didn’t react, I would lose my life and the lives of many people,” he said.

“Honestly, it was very scary.”

Khalilov’s bravery and quick-thinking came to light as Russia today holds a Day of Mourning for the 133 who died in the horror.

The British Embassy in Moscow and consulate in Yekaterinburg lowered their flags “to mourn with the Russian people the victims of the terrorist attack in Crocus City Hall”.

New footage also emerged of people making barricades from cafe chairs as they sought to avoid being gunned down by the brutal killers.

An ISIS splinter cell ISIS-K – who are known for killing children and beheading captives – have claimed responsibility for the massacre.

The resurgent faction are a warped army of barbaric fanatics that even terrify the Taliban.

On Friday night masked men in camouflage gear wielding automatic weapons stormed the Crocus City Hall – opening fire and hurling explosives into a crowd.

Some 6,000 people are believed to have been inside the venue watching Russian rock band Picnic when the bloodshed began.

The gunmen began shooting civilians at point-blank range – through glass doors, turnstiles and then the concert hall itself, traumatised witnesses said.

At least 133 were killed – including three children – and over 121 wounded – but the death toll continues to rise as bodies are pulled from the smouldering rubble.

Yesterday Vladimir Putin appeared to hint Russia is seeking to blame Ukraine for the attack – and vowed vengeance.

The Russian president, 71, addressed the nation and promised his people he would “punish” those responsible.

In a televised address to the nation, a furious Putin attempted to suggest the gunmen tried to escape to Ukraine after the “barbaric terrorist attack”.

Ukraine has already hit back at this claim – dismissing it as rubbish.

The Russian despot didn’t mention ISIS in his speech, sparking accusations from Kyiv that he is falsely trying to link Ukraine to the assault to support for his war in Ukraine, which recently entered its third year.

The Return of ISIS and its fight with Russia

ISIS’s infamous black flag is feared to be rising once again – with the attack on the Moscow hall being one of their bloodiest since they were defeated in the Middle East.

The Moscow attack was carried out by ISIS-K, the Afghan branch of the Islamic State, or ISIS.

The terrorist group’s attacks sparked horror around the world for years – and their violent videos showing beheadings, burnings and other executions shocked society to its core.

But it is feared that following on from the Taliban’s return to power in Afghanistan and the crisis in the Middle East following the October 7 massacre, the group is gathering strength.

US General Joel Vowell – who leads America’s efforts abroad to squash ISIS – previously warned that the threat of a suspected attack has risen 200 per cent in the last three months.

He headed the ten year US-led coalition Operation Inherent Resolve against ISIS, which saw Western troops stationed in Iraq and Syria – two hotbeds of the terror group’s activity.

The Middle East expert explained that ISIS cells have been rallying their forces in the background, “in Syria and Iraq in the last 60 days in particular”.

The group has long had motivation for attacking Russia, which intervened during the Syrian Civil war in 2015.

That same year, they bombed a flight travelling from Egypt to St Petersburg.

And in 2022, ISIS-K unleashed a deadly attack on the Russian embassy in Kabul.

Fears that ISIS are resurfacing have grown largely since the October massacre in Israel, which has sparked an ongoing war.

Hamas, a Palestinian Islamist extremist movement, launched a brutal attack on Israel’s border in the early hours of October 7, 2023 dubbed Israel’s “9/11” – killing over 1200 people.

Extremist Islamist groups including the Houthis and Hezbollah have since aimed attacks at the US and the UK, citing support of Israel – because of their war against Hamas.

Professor Anthony Glees told The Sun that the Western world now faces threats “from all sides” – and that the fight against Hamas, the Houthis and Hezbollah shouldn’t detract from efforts to protect ourselves from older terrorist threats like ISIS.

“I absolutely think we are being assailed from all sides. That makes us vulnerable. And when you’re vulnerable, you get bullied and attacked.”

The security expert also told The Sun that he “absolutely” thinks it’s possible that we could be looking at a new wave of a terrorist threat like those seen over the last 20 years.

The raging threat of terror groups like Hamas, the Houthis and Hezbollah could be combined with attacks by organisations like ISIS on UK soil.

Glees claimed that the events of October 7 and the ensuing war has “provided that spark”.

East2WestMum, Viktoria Ladeishchikova, was also gunned down[/caption]

East2WestHistory teacher, Irina Firsova was also listed among the dead[/caption]

The concert hall collapsed after explosives started a fire

A picture of inside the concert hall after the attack

Reactions of mourners outside the scene of the attack

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