A powerful explosion on a commuter bus in Yerevan that left two passengers dead was not a terrorist attack, Armenian law-enforcement authorities said on Tuesday.
The Office of the Prosecutor-General said Armenia’s National Security Service (NSS) has ruled out such a possibility as a result of a criminal investigation launched immediately after the blast ripped through the bus on Monday evening.
Investigators reportedly suspect that an explosive device may have been accidentally set off by a man who had a grudge against his relatives and planned a bomb attack on them.
In a statement, the Investigative Committee, another Armenian law-enforcement body, said they found at the scene of the blast the SIM card of a mobile phone belonging to that man before searching his apartment and finding explosives, detonators and “various types of electronic devices” there. They also found traces of the same explosive substance in the destroyed bus, it said.
The investigators did not identify the man, saying only that he is an Armenian citizen with a prior criminal record. Nor did they say whether he is one of the two victims of the blast, who has not yet been identified.
“The corpse is unrecognizable and DNA tests have been ordered on the basis of samples taken from it,” read the Investigative Committee statement.
Shortly after the blast, which also wounded seven other passengers, President Serzh Sarkisian ordered the Armenian police to tighten security in the capital.