Dzhokhar Tsarnaev: Boston Bombing Suspect Was Pupil At Cambridge High School

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, has been identified as the surviving suspect in the Boston Marathon blast. Photographs of Tsarnaev, currently the subject of a massive manhunt, appear to match the man who became known as "suspect number two" or "the suspect in the white hat".

Tsarnaev's father, Anzor, told the Associated Press his son was a smart and accomplished young man. Speaking from Makhachkala, the capital of Dagestan, he said: "My son is a true angel. Dzhokhar is a second-year medical student in the US. He is such an intelligent boy. We expected him to come on holidays here."

According to Tsarnaev's account on the Russian social networking site VKontakte, he graduated from Boston's Cambridge Rindge & Latin School in 2011, having attended School No 1 in Makhachkala from 1999 to 2001.

He appears to have been a good student, apparently receiving a $2,500 scholarship from the city of Cambridge in 2011 to pursue college. He was named a wrestling all-star at his high school in the same year.

On his VKontakte page, Tsarnaev says he considers "career and money" most important in life. As his world view, he wrote: "Islam."

The page says Tsarnaev speaks English, Russian and Chechen, and belongs to a number of groups devoted to Chechnya. Dagestan, a republic neighbouring Chechnya, maintains a small Chechen minority.

Tsarnaev was born on 22 July 1993, just before a fierce battle for independence broke out in the republic of Chechnya, which attempted to secede from Russia in the wake of the Soviet Union's collapse. Over time, the independence movement grew increasingly Islamist in character. Largely quashed by Moscow, a low-level insurgency persists in Chechnya and has leaked into neighbouring Dagestan.

On VKontakte, Tsarnaev follows several pages devoted to Islam. He also lists one of his favourite songs as "Hey Sexy Lady" by Shaggy.

An acquaintance from high school told the Guardian that Tsarnaev appeared to be a "very relaxed" person, in contrast to his brother.

Powered by article was written by Miriam Elder in Moscow, for on Friday 19th April 2013 16.09 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010


image: © Mark Z.

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