Moscow, Russia, Apr 3, 2017 / 11:23 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Archbishop Paolo Pezzi of Moscow offered his prayers and condolences following a deadly explosion in the St. Petersburg metro on Monday afternoon.

“With deep sorrow, I learned about the villainous terrorist act in St. Petersburg, which killed nine people and caused suffering and grief to many people,” the archbishop said in an April 3 statement. “Together with all faithful Catholics and believers of other faiths and religions, I turn to God with a burning prayer for deliverance of Russia and the world from the curse of terrorism,” he continued.

At least 9 people were killed and dozens more injured in an explosion on the St. Petersburg metro Monday afternoon. The blast took place at around 2:30 p.m. local time in a train car as it was passing through a tunnel between two underground stations. Some reports indicated that the explosion may have come from a briefcase left on the train. Another explosive device was later found in the metro system and safely disabled.

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev called the explosion a “terrorist act.” President Vladimir Putin said all causes, including terrorism, are being considered. The entire St. Petersburg metro system was shut down for an investigation to be carried out. Archbishop Pezzi called on all the faithful to join him in prayer as the country mourns.

“Let the merciful Lord accept the dead in his arms, grant healing to the victims, consolation to the mourners, His blessing and help to all those who work to prevent the repetition of this tragedy,” he said.