Return to Transcripts main page


Three Dead,152 Injured In Boston Marathon Attack; No Suspects In Boston Marathon Bombings; 7.8 Magnitude Earthquake In Iran Kills At Least 40; Sports World Reacts to Boston Marathon Bombings; U.S. Marine Helicopter Crashes Near North Korea

Aired April 16, 2013 - 08:00:00   ET


KRISTIE LU STOUT, HOST: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. And welcome to News Stream where news and technology meet.

Now coming to terms with tragedy, we take you to Boston and the search for answers after a deadly double bombing at the city's famed marathon.

A powerful earthquake in Iran shakes up people across the Gulf region and as far away as New Delhi. We'll bring the latest on that.

Now also ahead, a U.S. military helicopter crashes near the North Korean border as Pyongyang makes a new and menacing threat.

Now we're following two big stories for you this hour on News Stream. In a moment, we'll bring you up to date on the latest from the investigation into the Boston Marathon bombings. The attack killed an eight-year-old boy and two others.

But first, a very powerful earthquake has rattled the Gulf region and south Asia. Now a state of emergency is now in places in at least one Iranian city after the U.S. Geological Survey says the magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck Iran near the border with Pakistan. The extent of the damage not yet clear. But Iran's government run press TV reports at least 40 people are feared dead.

Now the tremor, it was felt in southern Pakistan, including the city of Karachi. Look at this video just in from Pakistan, it shows some of the effects from the magnitude 7.8 quake. Reuters also reports that tall buildings in the Indian capital of New Delhi shook, sending people running into the streets.

And for the very latest, lets go to Mari Ramos at the world weather center -- Mari.

MARI RAMOS, CNN WEATHER CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Kristie, that's some pretty impressive video there to see -- to think that in places so far away they still felt the shaking from this powerful quake here in southeastern Iran.

Now the color of the dot now you see it is orange, that indicates that this happened more than an hour ago. The two closest cities to the quake, the city of Khash and the city of Saravan would have experienced far stronger shaking than the one that you showed us in that video. Of course these very remote areas still difficult to get information from there.

What we're looking at here is the shake map. And it's colorized depending on the intensity. The intensity here, according to this, would have been anywhere from strong to very strong. And if we get even closer to the epicenter, you'll see a little bit of that red starting to pop up which would indicate severe shaking.

Now this happens in an area where earthquakes do tend to happen. However, it is farther away than those fault lines or plate tectonics, but it is in a very rugged terrain and difficult to reach.

Now you have this line right over here this would indicate the division line between the Arabian Plate and the Euroasian Plate. They clash into this area right in here. So an area not let's say a stranger to powerful quakes. However, this one was particularly powerful, felt as far away as you said as New Delhi and across the Gulf region.

I want to show you something pretty interesting, and I've showed you this before, this is the did you feel it? And this is from the U.S. Geological Survey. And people from the area that felt the quake can actually go in there and report what they felt and how. And you can see over here in Kandahar there's reports of shaking. Over here the green, that would indicate stronger shaking there. And even Karachi when it first popped up, people there were reporting only light shaking, we're starting to see some people report even more moderate shaking. So this is a quake that was felt widespread across the area.

Of course, the immediate danger -- we go back to the other map -- will be in this border region between Iran and Pakistan. This would be the area that would have experienced the most intense shaking.

This was a relatively shallow quake for it to be so intense, only about 15 kilometers deep. And those seismic waves would have traveled very, very far across this area. I would expect to see some significant damage in those areas closest to the quake, so we'll just have to wait and see until we get some confirmation of that -- Kristie.

LU STOUT: And Mari, remember the last time you brought up that shake map for us, it was April 10 when there was a 6.3 magnitude earthquake there in Iran. A lot of seismic activity there in recent weeks.

Mari Ramos there, thank you.

And now to a city in shock and a nation in disbelief, a terror attack in the U.S. city of Boston turned a festive marathon into mayhem.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is leading the effort to find whoever was behind Monday's blasts in Boston. At the moment, authorities say they have no motive, no suspects, but many active leads. And police are asking the public for help.

Now the attack killed this eight year old boy and two others. And the Boston Globes says Martin Richard, he was there to watch his father run and his mother and sister are among the 140 people injured. Doctors say the most serious wounds are to the lower limbs. And some victims have had their legs amputated.

Now this is a live look at a normally busy area of Boston, but this morning it is now empty. Copley Square right now, as you can see in that live cam, it's a crime scene.

All right, remember the Boston Marathon is one of the most prestigious running events. It is the world's oldest annual marathon. And thousands of people from around the world take part. The race starts in the rural town of Hopkinton and heads toward downtown Boston, and is estimated as many as half a million people line the streets to watch and to cheer on the competitors.

And the bombs went off in the final stretch. Most runners had already passed the finish line, but some 6,000 people were still running.

The first explosion, it happened in front of the Boston Public Library. And 12 seconds later, a second bomb exploded just up the road. Authorities say at least one other unexploded bomb was found and later dismantled.

Now the crude devices caused terrible carnage. And cameras on the scene captured what it was like when they went off.




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, there's got to be people injured up there.



Oh my god. Oh my god. Oh my god.


LU STOUT: You saw the first responders there rushing to pull barricades off people potentially trapped underneath. And bystanders joined in, some running toward the billowing smoke to help. And over and over, we saw strangers helping strangers.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're sleeve there, is that blood on the sleeve?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My pants, my clothes...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Show me that flag.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The flag, that was a flag I was holding the whole time. And this is how the flag ended up carrying the blood of all these victims.


LU STOUT: A bloodied American flag.

As we've mentioned, authorities are now speculating on a possible motive for the attack. Authorities, including bomb experts, have searched an apartment in Revere, Massachusetts. Now they are not saying if the search is linked to the bombing investigation.

CNN's Pamela Brown is there. She joins us now. Pam, what can you tell us?

PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Kristie, we have learned some new information this morning. According to CNN's Susan Candiotti, the residents of the apartment gave authorities consent to conduct the search here. In other words, a search warrant was not executed.

Also, a CNN producer Carol Pratti (ph) tells us that the resident of the apartment that was searched was a young Saudi here on a student visa. Authorities were here at this apartment complex in Revere, Massachusetts about 15 minutes away from where the explosions happened yesterday starting in around 5:00 yesterday afternoon. They were here for eight hours, we're told, through the night. We did see some of the authorities carrying out boxes from that apartment, but so far we are told that there hasn't been anything found inside the apartment connected to yesterday's explosion.

LU STOUT: And can you tell us what led authorities to go to that apartment building?

BROWN: We're still learning. There of course has been some speculation about what led authorities to this apartment. There are reports that there was a Saudi man running away from the explosion yesterday and that's what led authorities here, but we have no confirmation that that is exactly the clues that led them here. We're still learning. This is a developing story. The investigation is ongoing.

LU STOUT: All right. We know that the FBI, federal authorities, were involved in the search of that apartment earlier, the early hours of this morning. Boston police are working with them.

What are Boston police saying? What is the latest from their perspective on the investigation?

BROWN: We reached out to Boston police just about 15 minutes ago, Kristie, and basically they said that at this point this is the FBI's investigation and they referred us to the FBI. So authorities with Boston police are staying tight-lipped at this point.

LU STOUT: All right, Pamela Brown on the scene for us. Revere Massachusetts, thank you very much indeed for giving us the latest.

You're watching News Stream. And coming up next, dozens of people sustained terrible injuries in the Boston Marathon bombings. We'll have a live report from one of the hospitals treating the victims.

Also ahead, a U.S. military helicopter crash lands near the North Korean border. The latest on that coming up after the break.


LU STOUT: All right. Welcome back.

Now two bombs detonated within seconds of each other near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday afternoon. And three people, including an eight year old boy were killed and more than 140 remain in the hospital, some are in critical condition. And several people have had to have limbs amputated.

Now the FBI has taken the lead in the investigation. And officials say that they have questioned many people, but have not named a suspect. Now several law enforcement agencies did search an apartment in Revere just north of Boston late on Monday night, but they are not saying if the search is linked to the attacks.

And we'll have more on this developing story right here on News Stream.

Now on Capitol Hill, the flag has been lowered to half staff to honor the victims of the bombings. U.S. President Barack Obama has ordered to full resources of the federal government to respond to the attack.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We still do not know who did this or why. And people shouldn't jump to conclusions before we have all the facts. But, make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this and we will find out who did this. We'll find out why they did this. Any response -- any responsible individuals, any responsible groups, will feel the full weight of justice.


LU STOUT: President Barack Obama there.

Now let's turn our attention to the Korean Peninsula. And there is a new and menacing threat from North Korea.

Now on Tuesday, the country's official news agency published a statement warning South Korea that, quote, our retaliatory action will start without any notice from now. Now South Korea's defense minister called the threat regrettable.

Now also on Tuesday, a U.S. marine helicopter taking part in military exercises in South Korea made a hard landing near the North Korean border.

Now for the very latest, I'm joined now live by Anna Coren in Seould. And Anna, a lot to go to, but first let's talk about that heated rhetoric from North Korea issuing that ultimatum to the South. What was Pyongyang responding to?

ANNA COREN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, well Kristie, yesterday on the streets of Seoul there were protests. About 100 people took to the streets burning effigies of Kim Jong-un, his father and grandfather. And you have to remember that this is a particularly important day on the North Korean calendar. It is the anniversary of the birth of Kim il-Song, the founder of North Korea, which is why Pyongyang took such offense.

So the angry rhetoric coming out of North Korea this morning saying there will be retaliatory action without notice.

To put this into context, Kristie, in light of everything we've heard in the past month this is actually toned down language. I know to the outside world it may not seem like that, but certainly for people here in South Korea it is toned down. The Unification Ministry here in Seoul has said that the words out of Pyongyang are regrettable, but that is where it stands at the moment, Kristie.

LU STOUT: Interesting context there -- despite this latest rhetoric, bellicose words from North Korea, it seems that the tension is starting to ease in the Korean peninsula.

I also want to get your thoughts, Anna, on this event that happened near the North Korean border today. A U.S. Marine helicopter crashed. Any more details on this incident?

COREN: Yeah, details are pretty sketchy. What we do know is that this U.S. Marines helicopter did crash. It's called a Super Stallion helicopter. It crashed close to the DMZ. There were 21 people on board. Six people have been taken to hospital, but are in a stable condition, that's what we are hearing.

Now the U.S. Marines who were on board this chopper, they are normally stationed out of Okinawa in Japan. And they are obviously taking place -- taking part, I should say, in these joint military exercises that are being held between the United States and South Korea. It's the -- the exercises have been going on now for almost two months. They'll wrap up at the end of this month. So that is what we know about this helicopter crash. And certainly it is under investigation, Kristie.

LU STOUT: All right, Anna Coren joining us live from Seoul, thank you.

Now the FBI has taken the lead in the investigation of the Boston Marathon bombings. And ahead right here on News Stream, we'll have the latest on the search for clues.


LU STOUT: Two bombs detonated within seconds of each other near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday afternoon. And three people, including an eight year old boy, were killed. More than 140 remain in hospital, some in critical condition. Let's dig deeper into the investigation now.

Now no group has claimed responsibility for the attack. And Susan Candiotti joins us now live from CNN New York.

And Susan, no claim of responsibility, but there's been claims of no responsibility coming in. What can you tell us?

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Exactly. And that claim of no responsibility is coming from the Pakistani Talibani group, which in the past has claimed responsibility for the Times Square attempted bombing back in 2010 where that car was filled with explosives but fizzled out. However, in this case that group is saying it had nothing to do with these bomb blasts, however they said they're supportive of whoever might have been behind it.

Now, it's important to point out, Kristie, that at this point authorities here are not drawing any conclusions as to whether this is a domestic, or homegrown terrorist attack, or whether there is any foreign nexus to this at all.

Certainly investigators have a full plate. They have all kinds of, for example, surveillance videos to look at taken from buildings in the area, hotels and other commercial offices, this kind of thing. But also they're collecting cell phone videos and still photos taken by bystanders that might have pictures of what happened just before, not only what happened afterwards. So they can look for anything unusual in the crowd.

We also know that overnight -- and they spent about eight hours there -- they visited an apartment building in a town located about five miles north of downtown Boston. This is a place called Revere. And there they looked at an apartment building, and in particular one apartment. They did bring out some bags with them.

We are told that this is in connection with someone who was described to us by our law enforcement official sources as a Saudi student who was here on a student visa. However, I am told by our sources -- or we are told that that person who had been questioned so far they are finding no linkage to the bomb itself. And so far no one is being called a suspect and no one is in custody at this time.

So they have a lot to do in terms of picking apart the devices, the bombs that blew up, and at least one or two unexploded devices.

As you can imagine, Kristie, that could contain some signatures that might tell them the components, therefore where they came from, and who made them -- Kristie.

LU STOUT: Thank you for the clarity on the search into that apartment building and that apartment in Revere, Massachusetts as well as an number of leads being followed right now. But the question that all security analysts and correspondents are weighing right now why did this terror attack succeed? What made the Boston Marathon a vulnerable target?

CANDIOTTI: Well, certainly we all know that whenever there is a huge event, that can be a target for a terrorist. And so -- but apparently we are being told officially that there were no credible threats that led up to this event. But certainly it would be a prime target because of the number of people that were attending it. The question is why did the people who did this choose that particular moment of time four hours into the event and not, for example, at the starting line when people would have been packed in like sardines beginning that race. They didn't.

But the -- why? Was it planned that way? Or were the people who were behind this unable to get to a certain location? We don't know what.

We do know, Kristie, that one thing they'll be looking at are cellphone records. And they will track down every cell phone call that was made just before the two blasts occurred to try to see whether perhaps this might have been triggered by a cellphone device. It's just not known right now.

But perhaps, at least we hope, we might get more information on those devices within the next 24 to 48 hours. We'll see.

LU STOUT: All right, Susan Candiotti on the hunt for the perpetrators. Thank you.

And on our screen, you're looking at a live picture of Boston this morning. An aerial view of the finish line of the Boston marathon. The finish line now a crime scene in the aftermath of the Boston bombings.

Now on the streets of Boston, you can see signs of Monday's deadly bombing. Now these bags, they're usually claimed by runners at the finish line, but thousands of people never made it to the end. And this is the first of two explosions that rock the race. It's in slow motion here. And you can see some people fall to the ground while others are seemingly unhurt.

And 12 seconds later, as people are running away, another bomb goes off. And it happens back here in the highlighted area.

Now as many as two unexploded devices, they were also found. Three people were killed in the attacks. And authorities now say some 152 were injured.

Now investigators are closely examining forensic evidence to determine who might have carried out these attacks. And our Pentagon correspondent, Barbara Starr, joins me now from Washington. And Barbara, the FBI is leading the investigation, but the military is assisting. What are they looking for?

BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, the military is assisting, Kristie, from the standpoint that they have years of experience in Iraq and Afghanistan at looking at bomb blasts, collecting forensic evidence and analyzing it. In fact, for years they've been doing that in conjunction with the FBI. And what they are looking for is the so-called signature of the bomb. You know, a bomb maker puts together a bomb generally the same way every time. And when they train other bomb makers, they train them how to put a bomb together in the way that they would. That's essentially the signature.

What kind of components? How are they assembled? What kind of explosives, fuse, detonator, all of that. Where could the materials possibly have come from? These are the things that will begin to give them clues whether it was homegrown terrorism, domestic violence in the United States, or possibly attackers from another country, foreigners with a foreign motive not directly related to domestic terrorism. So these are the kinds of things that they're looking for.

What we know is right now the official word is that the FBI isn't leaning either way, domestic or overseas perpetrators. But they may begin within the coming hours and days to very quickly be able to assemble that signature and that may begin to give them very valuable clues -- Kristie.

LU STOUT: So right now they're looking at the bomb signatures on the devices themselves, hints about assembly, parts, construction. What about the bomb site itself, Barbara? How will the venue be analyzed?

STARR: Well, they will look at everything in terms of when the bomb went off, you know, where is the blast pattern? Where is the damage in the buildings surrounding it? They will look at the video, match up where the damage occurred, that will begin to give them a much better idea of the -- the energy, if you will, that blast energy.

You can look at that video -- you know, we look at it as civilians and it looks like a huge cloud of explosives and destruction to us, but what they want to know is something much more specific, what was the energy, the blast wave that caused the damage. That will begin to give them a much better idea of the size of the bomb and just how sophisticated it might have been.

LU STOUT: All right, Barbara Starr reporting on the forensic analysis. Many thanks indeed.

You're watching News Stream. And still to come, the latest on the investigation into the Boston Marathon bombings, including an update from one of the hospitals treating the victims.

And the elderly man highlighted in this video was felled by the blast, but he managed to walk away. An interview with the survivor up ahead.


LU STOUT: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong, you're watching News Stream. And these are your world headlines.

Now the FBI is leading the investigation into Monday's double bombing at the Boston Marathon. Three people, including an eight year old boy, were killed. And more than 152 were injured, some of the victims are in critical condition.

And demonstrators took to the streets of Venezuela's capital Caracas on Monday after the tight result in the country's presidential election. Police used tear gas to disperse them. And opposition protesters, they are angry at the government's refusal to carry out a vote recount. Nicolas Maduro narrowly beat opposition candidate Henrique Capriles.

A powerful earthquake in Iran has rattled much of the region and was even felt as far away as New Delhi. Now these are pictures of Pakistan where Iran's state run Press TV is now reporting five people have died. Earlier it said 40 people are feared dead in Iran after the magnitude 7.8 quake struck near the border with Pakistan.

Now the Boston Marathon is one of the most prestigious athletic events in the world. And this year, 27,000 people from 96 countries registered to take part. Most finished, but many didn't. And the bombings have changed the race's legacy forever.

Let's recap how it all unfolded.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was just this huge pile of smoke and then it sounded like a huge cannon went off and then it -- another one just happened right across from us and it -- it was just this huge explosion and there was just debris everywhere.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was a huge explosion while we were having lunch and everybody ran for the doors and windows and was sheltered under tables.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The elevator shook, the whole building, it was quite a blast, two of them. It scared the hell out of us.

ED DAVIS, BOSTON POLICE COMMISSIONER: These explosions occurred 50 to 100 yards apart. And each scene resulted in multiple casualties.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The explosion looked like it was right outside the Marathon Sports right by the finish line there, or the building next to it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have seen at least six people come in. You can see some of the people coming in on stretchers. They've got that shiny foil wrapped around them. Some of them, I suspect are runners, some of them may have just been bystanders, we don't really know because this all happened close to the medical tent and you know they have those foil wraps.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Many, many people injured. And those injuries are severe. There was a lot of blood left at the scene.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We helped localities (ph). We put -- we're picking them up, putting pressure on wounds. A lot of people were hurt and we just threw (ph) them, ran as fast as we could down here to give blood. They were banged up bad, severe lacerations, amputees, a lot of shrapnel.

You know, they were pretty big explosions.

OBAMA: We still do not know who did this or why. And people shouldn't jump to conclusions before we have all the facts. But make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this. And we will find out who did this. We'll find out why they did this. Any responsible -- any responsible individuals, any responsible groups, will feel the full weight of justice.


LU STOUT: Now medical personnel stationed near the finish line of the marathon, they were expecting to treat runners for problems like cramps, dehydration, instead in the aftermath of the bombings they found themselves in a battlefield.


STEPHEN SEGATORE, NURSE: The first thing we heard was explosion and we felt the concussion in the room and then several of us went running towards the front door and then about halfway there we heard the second explosion and then two or three of us kept going and then the group kept going back waiting for the casualties. So about half of us went forward to the wounded and then half stayed back waiting for the casualties.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, Jim, let me bring you in

JIM ASAIANTE, NURSE: Lots of smoke, lots of confusion, lots of blood, lots of injured patients. For me, it was just a flashback to Iraq. Hearing that first explosion, I knew it was an IED. And usually they come in twos, sometimes threes. Sometimes they wait until people come to help out the people that are injured and they set off the third one or the second one.


LU STOUT: Now officials say at least 17 people are still in critical condition, at least eight of the patients are children.

At Massachusetts General Hospital, a trauma surgeon says a number of people had to have limbs amputated.


PETER FAGENHOLZ, TRAUMA SURGEON: A number of patients will require repeat operations tomorrow and serial operations over the next couple of days. So as I mentioned, a lot of the injuries are combined. They're combined boney and soft tissue and vascular injuries. And they have to be approached oftentimes in kind of a step-wise fashion.


LU STOUT: Now the American Red Cross says that extra blood products have been sent to hospitals that are treating people wounded in the bombings.

And for the latest, Poppy Harlow joins me now live from Boston Hospital. And Poppy, just how many people are injured there and how badly?

POPPY HARLOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Kristie. From here in front of Brigham and Women's Hospital here, one of the major medical institutions in Boston. They are treating 31 of the injured at this hospital at this hour. The number of injured in this attack has increased. We just found out in the past few minutes it has increased from 144 to 152 people that have been injured, that is not the number necessarily in the hospital, but the number that were injured and that had been treated. Some -- or many may still be in the hospital. This is on top of the three fatalities.

The number of critical condition patients remains at 17. However, the number of patients that are seriously injured has increased pretty substantially from 25 to 41. 10 people have lost their limbs -- lost at least a limb in this horrific attack. Those injured ranged from age two all the way up to at least age 71; their injuries from minor scratches and bruises to incredibly complex and severe needed amputation.

I do want to give you an update that is a slight improvement from what we have been reporting. And that is that the eight children that were injured in this attack -- I just got off the phone with the Boston Medical Center -- Boston Children's Hospital, their spokeswoman -- and what I can tell you talking about those eight children that they treated, they told me that all eight are not still in the hospital. So that means that some -- we don't know how many, but some have been treated and released.

What I can also tell you is that they say the condition of those children ranged anywhere from good to serious, telling me that no child that they treated of those eight was in critical or severe condition.

So that is a slight improvement. We just didn't have any details on how those eight children were doing before. And this is an update that we know and we'll take any little bit of good news that we can, that at least none of those children are in critical condition.

LU STOUT: You bet, a slight improvement there, some very encouraging news.

Many children have been injured in the wake of the bombing. And we've been learning more, Poppy, about the eight year old boy who is among the three fatalities, learning more about him and his family. What can you tell us?

HARLOW: A beautiful young boy. I'm not sure if you have the picture or not, but if you do let's show our viewers standing there in his white suit holding a sign up of his name. The Boston Globe reporting the name of this eight year old boy who was killed in this tragic attack is Martin Richard. The paper saying that he is from Dorchester, Massachusetts, which is not far from where I am standing. It's a suburb of Boston. And not only was he killed in the attack, but the paper is reporting that his mother was severely injured, that his sister was also severely injured in this attack.

Also reporting the paper that the father's name is Bill, that is very active in the community and that the entire community really gathered and rallied around this family last night at a local restaurant in support of the family in mourning of this young eight-year-old life that was lost. And one of the active community members told the Boston Globe, talking about the Richard family saying, quote, "they are beloved by this community. It is surreal. It is tragic."

And this is one family, one family. We know 152 people, at least, injured. And at least three fatalities at this point in time. This is just one of their stories. We are at the very early stages of this as we know what tragedies like this. They continue to unfold. But at this hour, the loss of an eight year old boy, but we know that eight children that have been treated or are being treated at least are not in critical condition at this hour.

LU STOUT: That's right, this is a tragedy for many families with many people fighting for their lives in the hospital behind you. Poppy Harlow joining us live, thank you.

Now the 26th mile of this year's Boston Marathon, it was being dedicated to the memory of the 26 people killed in a mass shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Massachusetts last December. And some family members of those victims, they were at the race in Boston yesterday.

Now Piers Morgan spoke with one marathon runner whose hometown is close to Newtown. And she actually knows the mother of one of the Newtown victims.


TAMI HUGHES, CROSSED FINISH LINE JUST BEFORE BLAST: I knew that the race was being -- you know, was in their honor, but having found out that they were right there is devastating -- sickening that they would have to, you know, go celebrate such an amazing charity event and to have to almost go through the terror all over again.


LU STOUT: She described it as sickening, and that is indeed the word. Piers Morgan there speaking with one of the runners at yesterday's Boston Marathon.

Now of course one of the big questions on everybody's minds is who carried out these attacks? Now terror expert Paul Cruickshank told my colleague John Berman that right now investigators need more information before they can draw up a solid list of suspects.


PAUL CRUICKSHANK, CNN TERRORISM ANALYST: Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the Yemeni affiliate of al Qaeda about a year ago encouraged American followers to launch an attack on a sports venue, a crowded place in the United States, but that doesn't mean that al Qaeda was responsible here, John.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Two bombs went off, two others that didn't, maybe more. The fact there are so many devices, how much coordination does that require? Is that something that one lone wolf could have pulled off?

CRUICKSHANK: It's certainly possible that one lone wolf could have pulled this off. Remember, about a couple of years ago there was an attack in Norway. There was a bombing in Oslo, then a shooting a few hours later of a lot of teenagers. And just one individual, Anders Breivik, carried all of that out.

So it's certainly possible that a lone wolf could have been responsible, but again it could have been a group of individuals as well. And there will be a lot of concern right now that these -- the suspect or suspects are still at-large. And there could be follow on attacks.


LU STOUT: All right. Now news of the Boston Marathon attack, among other things, has rattled the world's stock markets. European stock markets are mostly in the red this Tuesday. And it follows a stock sell off on Wall Street on Monday, which was accelerated after the attacks in Boston. That, plus new threats on North Korea and weakness in the commodity markets are all discouraging investors. And we'll have a lot more on what's moving the markets in the next hour on World Business Today.

Now let's take you back to our other top story this hour, a powerful earthquake in Iran has rattled much of the Gulf region and was even felt as far away as New Delhi.

Now Shirzad Bozorgmehr is our Iran expert. He joins us now live from CNN Center. And Shirzad, this is a massive earthquake. So what are you hearing in terms of casualties?

SHIRZAD BOZORGMEHR, CNN PRODUCER: So far only 40 people have been reported killed, but those are initial reports and could change. The only thing is that the area is sparsely populated, mostly villages, so the numbers could possibly not go too much higher, because of the lack of concentration of people in one place.

The Iranian authorities are saying that they -- rescues are underway. They don't need any help from anybody so far, but as I said it's early still. Communications are actually well in place, electricity apparently is still on. The Iranian officials are saying that helicopters have been dispatched to the area to evacuate the wounded and the dead. So it seems to be under control.

The only thing is that it was so massive, reportedly between 7.5 to 7.7, that it was felt in India, in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and the Persian Gulf countries as well on the other side of the Persian Gulf from Iran. There were evacuation plans in the United Arab Emirates apparently.

So, as I said, the only saving grace is that it's sparsely populated area and the casualties hopefully will be low.

LU STOUT: OK, so the epicenter, it was in a remote area, a sparsely populated area. But that said, it was a 7.8 magnitude earthquake that was felt across the region. Were its effects felt at all in sensitive nuclear sites in Iran? Have you heard anything about that?

BOZORGMEHR: Yes. Iranian authorities said this morning that there was no -- they had no effect on Bushehr or any other nuclear plant. It was felt in Shiraz, which is far away from the nuclear plant. There was no report of anything in Bushehr itself. So the nuclear plant is safe.

Anyway, Iranians are saying that the nuclear plant is safe up to 8.2, I think, 8.2 on the Richter scale for any earthquake.

LU STOUT: Shirzad, we also know that Iran has declared a state of emergency, what does that mean, what has been mobilized to help the victims?

BOZORGMEHR: At least 14 rescue teams have been mobilized and sent to the area. I don't know how many have reached the area yet, but a telephone conversation a member of parliament from that area was talking to the -- one of the governors of the local areas, and they were saying that rescue workers are in place, that people are being helped. And so far there's a tentative number of 40 have been killed and the number of injured are not known yet.

LU STOUT: All right. Shirzad Bozorgmehr, thank you very much indeed for giving us the very latest on this developing story.

You're watching News Stream, we'll be back right after the break.


LU STOUT: Now the FBI is leading the investigation into Monday's bombings at the Boston Marathon. Three people were killed and more than 150 others were injured. Law enforcement authorities searched an apartment in Revere, Massachusetts just north of Boston late on Monday, but a law enforcement source told CNN they have not linked what they found in that search to the bombings. So far, no one has been named as a suspect and no group has claimed responsibility.

Now this wasn't just a local event, but a global and a historic competition. Let's join Alex Thomas who can tell us how the world of sport has reacted -- Alex.


The Boston Marathon is one of the best known road races on the planet. It's the world's oldest annual marathon, first run back in 1897. This year, more than 26,000 runners from all over the world took part, and the number of spectators on the streets of Boston was estimated at half a million.

It's always run on the third Monday of April, which is Patriot's Day, a holiday in Massachusetts. And like any marathon, the race is run over 42 kilometers, or just over 26 miles. It started in the suburbs of Boston, ending on Boylston Street downtown in front of the public library.

Like any of us, athletes from across the globe were affected by the tragic events. Double Olympic spring champion Usain Bolt tweeted, "what sad news. Praying for all."

While boxing champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. wrote, "much love to the city of Boston. Stay strong."

Tennis star Victoria Azarenka said, "all my thoughts and prayers go to all the victims and families in Boston."

There was a tone of retribution in the demand by U.S. track and field start Lolo Jones who said, "find the bomber. Lord Jesus, may you aid the cops in finding the person who did this."

An NBA star Rajon Rondo, who plays for Boston's team The Celtics tweeted simply, "sending prayers out for Boston."

Needless to say, the tragedy in Boston has had an impact on America's sporting calendar. The NHL game between the Bruins and the Ottowa Senators didn't take place last night as planned. And Tuesday evening's NBA game between the Celtics and the Indiana Pacers has been canceled. There are also moments of silence held at many U.S. sporting events in honor of the victims including in Cleveland where the Cavaliers will host the NBA champions the Miami Heat.

Well, like Boston, London also hosts one of the world's biggest and most famous marathons. But organizers here in the UK say their event scheduled for Sunday will go ahead as originally planned.


NICK BITEL, LONDON MARATHON CEO: Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected and their families and friends. It's an awful day for Boston, but also for the family of athletics and our friends and colleagues at the Boston Marathon.

We are continuing to review security with the metropolitan police in the coming days.


THOMAS: We'll have more on this in World Sport in just over three hours time as well as other sports stories. For now, Kristie, back to you in Hong Kong.

LU STOUT: All right. Alex Thomas there, thank you.

Now federal law enforcement sources say a cellphone service overload around the center of Boston hampered the investigation in the early going. It also kept runners like these from reaching their loved ones.

Now Wired Magazine offers tips for communicating during a disaster. Number one, don't call. First responders need the lines open. Instead, Wired said you should text or use apps. And if you are able to make only one call, Wired suggests updating your voice mail message to say that you're OK. That way, anyone trying to get through will hear your status.

Now some companies also pitched in to help put people in touch. ATT&T set up a call center in one hotel and opened its wi-fi network to everyone. And Google created this person finder tool. It let's people either search for information or post an update to someone.

Now you're watching News Stream. And still ahead, caught in the blast and literally blown off his feet, the Boston Marathon runner highlighted right there recounts the moment the first bomb exploded.


LU STOUT: Now a 78 year old runner was blown off his feet by the blast as he neared the finish line. A Boston Globe photographer was there when it happened. And our Piers Morgan spoke with them both.


JOHN TLUMACKI, BOSTON GLOBE PHOTOGRAPHER: I saw so many injuries that I had never seen before. I saw people with their legs blown off, their foot blown off. I just couldn't believe the carnage. When I got to the other side of the fence, there was a barricade fence there to keep spectators off the course, there was just people on top of people on top of people and it was just -- it was just an incredible sad sight to see that. And I just fear that the death toll will be greater than the three it is now.

MORGAN: John, I'm just going to leave it there for a moment. We've got now on the line, Bill Iffrig, who is that gentleman that we saw being blown off his feet there, the man in the orange, and that image right now on the cameras there with the police.

Bill Iffrig, thank you for joining me tonight.


MORGAN: The whole world has seen the images of you being blown off your feet. Tell me exactly what you experienced as you ran towards the finishing line.

IFFRIG: Well, I was just approaching the last straightaway to the finish line and I had a good day and I was feeling really good, and I got down to within about 15 feet of the finishing apron and just tremendous explosion, sounded like a bomb went off right next to me, and the shockwaves just hit my whole body and my legs just started jittering around.

I knew I was going down and so I ended up down on the blacktop and I didn't feel any severe pain but as I rolled over, I seen a little scratch on my leg but nothing too bad, so I laid there just momentarily. One of the finisher assistants come over and talked to me and asked me if there was anything he could do and offered to give me a hand, help me get up and help me get over the finish line so I could complete my race.

So we did that and I felt OK so I told him I was probably all right. He insisted on getting a wheelchair over there so we started to do that, but then before that was rounded up, I said hey, I'm only -- my hotel is about six blocks away so I think I can make it OK. So they let me -- let me get out of there and I went on home to my wife.


LU STOUT: 78 year old runner and survivor Bill Iffrig there.

Now tributes to the victims of the bomb attacks in Boston have been pouring in from around the world. And some of the most heartfelt are from native Bostonians.

Now the late-night talk show host Conan O'Brien, he mentioned the attack in his opening monologue last night on CNN's sister network TBS.


CONAN O'BRIEN, HOST, CONAN: We do have a great show for you tonight. But first I did want to start by mentioning what an upsetting and sad day it has been. I'm talking, of course, what happened in Boston earlier today. Boston is my hometown. It's where I grew up. It's where my family lives. So I wanted to take a moment to say that like everybody here my thoughts and prayers are with the people of Boston and everybody who has been affected by this absolutely senseless act. And it's important to say right up top.

That said, it is our job to do a show. And we're going to try and entertain you the very best we can, which given our track record gives you people a 20 percent chance of having a good show tonight. And I think that's pretty good.


LU STOUT: That's on Conan. And the Hollywood actor and director Ben Affleck who is also from Boston, he sent out this tweet, "such a senseless and tragic day. My family and I send our love to our beloved and resilient Boston.

That is News Stream, but the news continues here at CNN. We'll bring you more coverage of the Boston Marathon bombings in the next hour. We join our colleagues at CNN USA. So stayed tuned for that.