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Prosecutor General of Russia loses in case brought by Beslan victims
Written by Лента.ру   
Четверг, 26 Апрель 2007

Lenta.ru: http://lenta.ru/news/2007/04/26/case/ April 26th, 2007

The Leninsky regional court in Vladikavkaz has thrown out a resolution by the Russian prosecutor general. According to the newspaper Kommersant, the resolution was a refusal to bring criminal charges against members of the operational headquarters responsible for rescuing hostages in Beslan.

Taimuraza Chejemova, attorney for victims of the September 2004 terror act, said that a complaint against the resolution was filed in the end of January of this year. Defense demanded that the prosecution’s resolution of April 20th, 2006, be declared “illegal and groundless”.

“In reaching this decision, the prosecution’s investigator relied on a commission’s findings made on December 23rd, 2005, which the same district court a year later also found to be illegal,” explained the lawyer.

The prosecutor general’s office lodged a complaint against this latest decision of the court, and their protest will be examined by the North Osetian supreme court on May 2nd. If it is refused, then former Osetian president Alexander Dzasoxov and other officials can be held accountable.

Recall that at the end of last year the prosecutor’s office agreed conduct new hearings into the actions of the operational headquarters during the terror act in Beslan.

A member of the previous parliamentary commission that looked into the terror act in Beslan, Member of the Russian Federal Parliament Yuri Savelev, is also the author of an alternative report on the Beslan terror act. In his opinion those guilty of what happened were not just the terrorists, but ‘siloviki’ (members of the armed forces, police, and secret services). Savelev believes that “the decisions of the courts have returned the investigation of this act of terror to its starting point, and destroyed the entire case built up by the investigators in their more than two years of work”. The office of the south federal district’s prosecutor general explained that if the new commission refutes the results of the previous one, then the supervising prosecutor will vacate the decision of the investigative team and demand a legal evaluation of the actions of the responsible parties during the time of the assault.

“Meanwhile, the investigation’s materials were used to construct a case accusing police officers of negligence in the Beslan case, and in the sentencing of the terrorist Nurpasha Kulayev,” explained Savelev.

On December 22nd, 2006, a commission investigating the Beslan terror act published its final report, which noted that the organizers of the seizure of hostages were Aslan Maskhadov, Shamil Basayev, and the Arab mercenary Abu Jait. “The terror act was possible due to the absence of required oversight over security by the Russian interior ministry,” the document affirmed. The sole surviving participant in the seizure of hostage, Kulayev, was sentenced in May of 2006 to life in prison.

On September 1st, 2004, a group of terrorists seized hostages in a school in the North Osetian city of Beslan. As a result of the terror act 333 persons, including 186 children, were killed.

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