Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, who once lived in the Russian region of Dagestan close to Chechnya, was identified on Friday as a surviving suspect in the Boston Marathon explosions earlier this week.
A national security official confirmed the identities of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and his brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev as the Boston suspects.
On his profile page on the Russian social networking site Vkontakte.ru, the suspect spelled his name as “Djohar Tsarnaev” and listed “Islam” and “Career and money” as his main concerns in life.
The profile says he attended School No. 1 in Dagestan’s regional centre of Makhachkala, as well as Cambridge Rindge & Latin School in Boston.
The headmaster of the school says there were four children, two boys and two girls, in the family but they all left for the United States in March 2002.
The Associated Press spoke to the father of the two suspects, who described Dzhokhar Tsarnaev as a “true angel.”
Anzor Tsarnaev, who spoke to the Associated Press via telephone from Russia, said his son was smart and accomplished.
“Dzhokhar is a second-year medical student in the U.S. He is such an intelligent boy. We expected him to come on holidays here.”
The mens’ uncle, Ruslan Tsarni of Montgomery Village, Md., told The Associated Press that the men lived together near Boston and have been in the United States for about a decade. They travelled here together from the Russian region near Chechnya.
“This family arrived in 2001 from Kyrgyzstan as refugees. The children were admitted to the school,” the headmaster of School No. 1 Emirmagomed Davydov said.
“He (Dzhohkhar Tsarnaev) was admitted to the first form. The other brothers and sisters were in the fifth and the eighth forms. And in March 2002 they left for the United States of America,” Davydov added.
‘He left without even finishing the first form. He, along with his family, left in spring, in March,” Davydov said, displaying a log-book showing a column of enrolled children with the last name Tsarnaev.
Russia is battling an Islamist insurgency in Dagestan and other North Caucasus provinces that is rooted in two post-Soviet wars in Chechnya, which borders Dagestan.
Dagestan is now the most violent of the North Caucasus provinces. Bombings, attacks on officials and gun battles are a near daily occurrence, may of them blamed on militants who say they want to carve out an Islamic state.
Police killed one suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing during a shootout and were engaged in a house-to-house search for a second man on Friday in the Boston suburb of Watertown after a bloody night of shooting and explosions in the city’s streets.
During the night a university police officer was killed, a transit police officer was wounded, and police say the suspects carjacked a vehicle before leading police on a chase that ended with one suspect shot dead.
Police said the suspect they were seeking was the man shown wearing a white cap in surveillance pictures released on Thursday night which had been taken shortly before explosions on Monday that killed three people and wounded 176 at the finish of the Boston Marathon.