France beefs up security following Russia blast

"A station attendant in tears called on the men to help carry the bodies", he said. The driver made the right decision not to stop the train but take it to the next station, which allowed for promptly starting the evacuation and providing assistance to the injured.

Russian Federation has experienced bomb attacks carried out by Islamist rebels from Russia's North Caucasus region in the past.

The attack will likely result in increased security measures across Russian Federation, potentially giving a boost to Putin in the lead-up to the the 2018 election campaign, Dougherty said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack Monday, but Russian trains and planes have been targeted repeatedly by Islamic terrorists, mostly connected to the insurgency in Chechnya and other Caucasus republics.

Soon after the blast happened at 2:40 p.m., ambulances and fire engines descended on the concrete-and-glass Sennaya Ploshchad station.

August 1999: Four apartment building bombings kill about 300 people in Moscow and two other Russian cities. Russia's subway service said it closed down seven stations due to the explosion. However, the Interfax news agency later cited unspecified sources as saying police now suspect the blast was the work of a suicide bomber.

Officials said that second device was found in the metro station at Vosstaniya Square and that it contained shrapnel, according to Interfax.

In 2013, Russian Federation was hit by twin suicide strikes that claimed 34 lives and raised alarm over security at the Sochi Winter Olympic Games.

Russian TV said many had suffered lacerations from glass shards and metal, the force of the explosion amplified by the confines of the carriage and the tunnel.

A police officer stands guard at the entrance to Technological Institute metro station in Saint Petersburg on April 3, 2017.

"Our train slowed down a bit, and one woman started having hysterics when she saw the people lying on the platform, blackened, in some places with no clothes, burned", she told Reuters. "It was very scary". One detail emerged: officials said the blast was not a suicide attack. Some were seriously injured.

Putin was in St. Petersburg attending a pro-Kremlin media forum, Maynes added.

The Moscow metro also tweeted that it was "taking additional security measures" as required by law in such situations.

Most of the terrorist attacks in Russian Federation have been connected to the insurgency in Chechnya and other Caucasus republics in the southern part of the country.

The recent political backdrop in Russia, including large protests, and its relationship with neighboring countries will be an important context in any response to Monday's subway explosion in St. Petersburg, according to a University of Kansas researcher of Russian foreign policy.

January 2011: Suicide bomber blows himself up at Domodedovo Airport, Moscow's busiest, killing 35 and injuring 180 people.

  • Joanne Flowers