Terrorists’ Plans for Beslan

VLADIKAVKAZ (RIA Novosti, by Albina Olisayeva) — The terrorists who seized a school in Beslan, North Ossetia, on September 1-3 had not intended to enter into talks with authorities.

This is what Konstantin Krivorotov, who is heading a team of investigators at the North Caucasus department of the Russian Prosecutor General’s Office, said in an interview with the local Severnaya Osetia newspaper.

Mr. Krivorotov said the investigators had videotape that showed gang leader Khuchbarov who said on September 2: "I do not need anyone for negotiations. No one will leave the school, the building is mines studded and will blow up immediately. Let them storm the building if they want. We are ready."

Mr. Krivorotov believes this reveals the terrorists’ intentions.

He admitted that there were doubts about whether there was enough room for 32 terrorists with weapons and ammunition in one GAZ-66 truck.

However, an investigative experiment showed that it was quite possible to accommodate them all in one truck, according to Mr. Krivorotov.

He also said the suggestion that the weapons had been hidden in the school in advance was not confirmed.

"The fact that small arms, ammunition, and explosives were brought to the school by the terrorists themselves was confirmed by witnesses interrogated in the course of investigation," said Mr. Krivorotov.

Besides, investigators found out that the terrorists had not made arms caches in the school in advance.

"Initially victims said caches had been in the school library and gym’s floor from where the terrorists had taken their weapons and ammunition in large quantities. However, later they said they only saw terrorists breaking the floor, but did not see them taking weapon out," said Mr. Krivorotov.

"It should be recalled that under article 75 of Russia’s Code of Criminal Procedure, victims or witnesses’ evidence based on conjecture, supposition, or rumor and evidence by witnesses who cannot disclose their information source is qualified as inadequate," said Mr. Krivorotov.

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Interviews of North Ossetian Officials
Due to Beslan Tragedy Complete

MOSCOW (RIA Novosti) — The parliamentary commission probing into last September’s terrorist attack on the town of Beslan in the North Caucasus republic of North Ossetia have completed interviewing the regional officials.

According to a press release from the public affairs office of the Federation Council (the upper chamber of the Russian parliament), the commission’s meeting was addressed by presidential advisor Aslambek Aslakhanov and a former officer of the North Ossetian division of the Federal Security Service (FSB).

Mr. Aslakhanov offered some details of the September 1-3 negotiations with the terrorists, and the former FSB officer told the meeting about the situation brewing in Beslan on the eve of the terrorist attack, offering his grasp of the reasons stoking proliferation of terrorism in the region.

According to the press release, the commission decided to summon Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliyev.

"At the request of the Beslan resident activists a decision has been taken to dispatch a member of the commission to Beslan next week. A trip to Beslan by the commission’s chairman, Alexander Torshin is planned as well. Mr. Torshin is tasked to agree on a date for North Ossetian President Alexander Dzasokhov and Ingush President Murat Zyazikov to attend a meeting of the commission," the press release reads.

The meeting also discussed the make-up of its report.