Russia’s Crocus City Hall to no longer host concerts after deadly ISIS attack

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Moscow’s Crocus City Hall, the site of the deadliest attack in Russia in two decades, will not operate as a concert venue after it is restored, the regional governor told state-run media on Saturday.

The plush venue on the outskirts of the capital burned down on March 22 after a mass shooting during a rock concert that killed 145 people and wounded hundreds more.

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A chapter of the ISIS group swiftly claimed responsibility for the attack, though Russia also blamed Ukraine for having a hand in it -- accusations Kyiv has firmly denied.

In the aftermath of the attack, officials debated whether to reopen the venue.

“There will no longer be a concert hall there,” Moscow Region Governor Andrei Vorobyov told RIA Novosti news agency about the restoration plans. The report published on Saturday did not detail what the site might be used for in the future.

Opened in 2009, Crocus City Hall attracted a range of Russian and international stars.

Former US president Donald Trump held a “Miss Universe” contest there in 2013, the same year British comedian-turned-politician Eddie Izzard performed at the hall.

The venue was built by influential, Azerbaijan-born real estate developer Aras Agalarov and dedicated to Muslim Magomayev, a pop singer famous in the Soviet era who also came from Azerbaijan.

The deadly attack raised questions about Russia’s security apparatus after the United States revealed it had warned Moscow that extremists were planning to attack the venue.

On Sunday, three months after the concert hall massacre, a series of attacks on churches, synagogues and a police checkpoint rocked the restive North Caucus region.

Attackers killed at least 20 people in Russia’s southern republic of Dagestan.

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