Kremlin to blame for Beslan deaths, claims Russian MP
Almost two years after 331 people died in the Beslan school siege, one of the MPs investigating the tragedy has released a report that blames the Kremlin for the death of more than a third of the hostages, whose safety, he suggests, was not a priority.
Yuri Savelyev, an MP and member of the official parliamentary inquiry panel, claims that Russian forces deliberately stormed the school on 4 September 2004 using maximum force.
His account suggests the government disregarded the safety of the women and children cowering inside the school in southern Russia and that it was more interested in killing the pro-Chechen terrorists than saving the hostages.
According to Mr Savelyev, a weapons and explosives expert, special forces fired rocket-propelled grenades without warning as a prelude to an armed assault, ignoring the fact that negotiations were apparently still going on.
He says the explosions turned the school into a
war zone when the Chechen gunmen retaliated, causing a fire which killed
many of the hostages trapped beneath its burning roof.
The Chechen rebel who apparently masterminded the siege - Shamil Basayev - was killed last month in an explosion that the Kremlin claims was the result of a special operation.
The search for his personal archive and an estimated $7m (£3.7m) in cash has apparently led the authorities to abduct his last wife, whose identity and existence was a mystery until very recently.
Elina Ersenoyeva, 26, was snatched by masked gunmen on 17 August and has not been heard from since.
Please help our fight against the New World Order by giving a donation. As bandwidth costs increase, the only way we can stay online and expand is with your support. Please consider giving a monthly or one-off donation for whatever you can afford. You can pay securely by either credit card or Paypal. Click here to donate.