Russia’s Ministry of Health has posted photos of the former US actor Steven Seagal visiting victims of the Islamic State terrorist attack on Crocus City Hall at the Pirogov National Medical and Surgical Center in Moscow on Thursday.

Seagal, who was granted Russian citizenship in November 2016 and who once called Vladimir Putin “one of the great living world leaders,” said, “What happened was a terrible tragedy that should not have happened.”

The 71-year-old actor thanked the three wounded Muscovites for “their courage and perseverance” before saying “I think that Russia will serve as an example and let the world understand that you can’t just do this to any people and go unpunished.”

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He later said of his visit: “I thank the doctors for the prompt work they are doing, I am glad to see that the patients are feeling well and are recovering.”

Seagal, was appointed as Russia’s Special Representative for Russia-US Cultural Links, Cultural and Historical Heritage in 2018. He continues to be an outspoken supporter of the annexation of Crimea and Russia’s full-scale war in Ukraine.

While a photograph published last week showed Putin apparently lighting a candle for the victims in a Moscow church, he has otherwise shown no intention of visiting the scene of the massacre or meeting with any of the wounded and injured survivors or relatives of those who were killed.

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Long gone are the days when Western officials said Russian military production couldn’t sustain its war in Ukraine, or a Ukrainian official said Russian strikes would soon stop due to lack of ammo.

When asked if the Russian leader planned any such meetings, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov merely said: “If any contacts are necessary, we will inform you accordingly.”

Peskov also said that Putin did not currently plan to visit the Crocus City concert hall, while rescue workers continue to search beneath the rubble for bodies.

He said: “In these days it would be completely inappropriate to carry out any fact-finding trips because this would simply interfere with the work of the rescuers.”

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Despite spokespersons for ISIS having said that its jihadists were responsible for the attack several times since Friday’s events, Putin and Russian officials are still pushing the claims that Ukraine and Western intelligence agencies were somehow involved.

Moscow has also expressed confidence in the ability of the country’s security services to safeguard the capital and its people in the face of growing numbers of questions as to how the massacre was not prevented.

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