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Author Topic: Terrorists take Moscow Theatre Hostage!  (Read 2116 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: October 23, 2002, 11:05:33 PM »

Wednesday, October 23, 2002

MOSCOWáùáAt least 40 armed Chechen rebels stormed a crowded theater and took hundreds of theatergoers hostage, threatening early Thursday to shoot their captives and blow up the building if Russian security forces attacked.

As police surrounded the building, Russian officials held their first talks with the hostage-takers several hours after they stormed in firing weapons and demanding that Russia end the war in Chechnya, a southern region where the army is fighting Islamic separatists.

Some hostages reported seeing pools of blood but there was no confirmation of casualties.

The gunmen told Aslanbek Aslakhanov, a parliament member from Chechnya who was serving as a mediator, that they wanted Russian troops to withdraw from Chechnya and implement to a cease-fire, lawmaker Yuli Rybakov told reporters outside the theater.

Rybakov said the hostage takers had automatic weapons, grenades, belts with explosives attached, mines and canisters of gasoline. There was little water or food available for the hostages.

Automatic weapons fire crackled sporadically during the night and security forces were on high alert throughout the Russian capital after the audacious attack, which Russian military experts said was meticulously planned.

The drama was a blow for President Vladimir Putin, who repeatedly has said Russia has the situation in Chechnya under control. Putin was supposed to leave Thursday to visit Germany and Portugal, but scrapped the trip, his press spokesman, Alexei Gromov, told the Interfax news agency. It was unclear what Putin planned to do about attending a weekend summit in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, where he was to meet with President Bush.

Moscow police spokesman Valery Gribakin said about 100 women and children had been let out of the theater, and news reports quoted some of them as saying there were pools of blood in the theater halls. The freed hostages were distraught, sobbing and shaking as they emerged from the building where they had been watching a popular musical show.

"The terrorists are demanding one thing ù the end to the war in Chechnya," said Gribakin, who said there 40 to 50 rebels in the theater.

Police towed cars parked near the theater and evacuated patients from a nearby hospital.

Those released did not see any dead bodies, but said the hostage takers had beaten some in the audience. Two pregnant women were later released.

Inside the theater, frantic hostages used cell phones to call families, television and radio stations. Outside, worried Muscovites waited in the dark and in a freezing rain for news of their relatives.

Russian news reports said the rebels offered to release 50 more hostages if Akhmad Kadyrov, the head of Chechnya's Moscow-appointed administration, came to the theater.

ITAR-Tass said the gunmen were laying mines inside the theater. Other Russian media reports said the rebels threatened to shoot hostages if Russian security forces stormed the building. TV6 television news said the attackers had explosives on their bodies and would blow themselves up if attacked.

Gribakin, the police spokesman, said there were about 600 people inside the theater when it was seized. The Germany Foreign Ministry confirmed there were Germans inside. Russian news reports said three British citizens also were in the theater.

In Washington, the White House said it wasn't aware of any Americans being held. Spokesman Sean McCormack said Bush was monitoring the situation. "There are no causes or national aspirations that justify the taking of innocent hostages," McCormack said in a statement. "We condemn terrorism in all its forms. Our thoughts and prayers are with the hostages and their families."

A woman who made her way out of the theater told a television interviewer the men wore camouflage as they took the stage, fired into the air and said: "Don't you understand what's going on? We are Chechens."

News reports said the hostage-takers arrived in jeep-like vehicles just as the second act of the play was about to begin. When police and security forces surrounded the theater, the attackers opened fired and threw a grenade. One of the hostages, a doctor, was treating a hostage-taker who was wounded.

Russia is involved in a bloody war in Chechnya, trying to put down a decade-old separatist insurrection in the oil-rich region. News reports cited a Chechen rebel Web site as saying the group was led by Movsar Barayev, the nephew of warlord Arbi Barayev, who reportedly was killed last year.

The Web site said some of the women hostage takers were widows of Chechen rebels killed in the war with Russia and said the rebels were "smertniki," a Russian word for fighters prepared to die for a cause.

"By the scope it can only be compared to the tragedy in New York. The situation is extreme now," liberal Russian lawmaker Boris Nemtsov said in a television interview. "We must start a dialogue."

Senior Russian officials had no immediate comment on the hostage taking which, in an unprecedented move, was being broadcast live from outside the theater on radio and television.

The news reports said Aslanbek Aslakhanov, a member of the national parliament from Chechnya, was inside the theater and negotiating, as was Ruslan Khasbulatov, the former speaker of the Russian parliament who is an ethnic Chechen. Khasbulatov was a leader of the deadly uprising at the Russian parliament in 1993.

The Chechens are among the fiercest national groups in the country and battled the Czars in the 19th century before being finally defeated and their homeland made part of Russia.

Stalin deported them en masse to Kazakhstan in 1944 for allegedly betraying the Soviet Union and supporting Hitler. They were allowed to return to their homes in 1957. The fierce fighters declared independence from the Soviet Union shortly before it collapsed in 1991, and Russian forces subsequently invaded the region to put down the rebellion.

Chechen rebel leader Shamil Basayev helped force Russia to the negotiating table by leading a bloody raid on the town of Budyonnovsk in a neighboring Russian region in June 1995. His fighters briefly took more than 1,000 hostages and then escaped back into Chechnya. More than 100 civilians died.

Russian forces left Chechnya in 1996 after the disastrous two-year war but returned in 1999 after rebels raided a neighboring region and Russian authorities blamed insurgents for a series of apartment bombings in Russia that killed more than 300 people.

In a January 1996 raid on the southern Russian town of Kizlyar, rebels took hundreds of hostages at a local hospital. Some 78 people were killed.

The theater, a former Soviet-era House of Culture that belonged to a ball-bearing factory, was staging a performance of the musical Nord-Ost (North-East in German), one of Moscow's most popular productions.

Police units and an Alpha special forces unit went to the theater and sealed the area in the freezing, wet weather. The Federal Security Service, the successor to the Soviet KGB, and the Interior Ministry put plan "Thunderstorm" into effect, which required all officers to report to their units.

Putin was immediately told of the hostage taking, Interfax reported. Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov went to the theater.

The theater is in southeastern Moscow in a working class neighborhood. The musical is based on Veniamin Kaverin's novel Two Captains. The romantic novel recounts the story of two students and their different destinies during the Soviet times. The theater's producer, Alexander Tsekalo, said on Russian television that the theater could hold 1,163 people.

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« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2002, 11:44:39 PM »

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« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2002, 12:39:30 PM »

Thursday, October 24, 2002 FoxNews.com

MOSCOWáùáChechen rebels holding hundreds of hostages in a Moscow theater shot and killed one captive and said they were ready to die for their cause, warning Thursday that thousands more of their comrades were "keen on dying."

A news agency reported, meanwhile, that the rebels had fired two rocket-propelled grenade rounds out of the theater Thursday night. It was not immediately clear where the grenades landed or if there were injuries.

In a broadcast monitored in Cairo, Egypt, the Qatar-based Al-Jazeera satellite TV channel broadcast a videotaped statement by one of the estimated 40 hostage-takers.

"I swear by God we are more keen on dying than you are keen on living," a black-clad male hostage-taker said in the broadcast. "Each one of us is willing to sacrifice himself for the sake of God and the independence of Chechnya."

"Even if we are killed, thousands of brothers and sisters will come after us, ready to sacrifice themselves," declared a female hostage-taker, covered in a black robe except for her eyes.

Al-Jazeera did not explain how it obtained the pictures, and it was not clear if it had been taken in the theater or before the raid began. Police and soldiers have pushed journalists hundreds of yards back from the theater.

Al-Jazeera is known for having broadcast statements by Usama bin Laden and other members of his Al Qaeda terrorist network. Russian and U.S. officials also have said some Al Qaeda fighters may be in Chechnya. Chechens also were among fighters ousted from Afghanistan late last year when the ruling Taliban were overthrown.

The rebels, both men and women, stormed the theater at 9:05 p.m. Wednesday as an audience of about 700 people watched a popular musical.

A blanket-shrouded body, identified only as a woman, was wheeled out of the theater Thursday afternoon, apparently killed in the early hours of the hostage drama. Sergei Ignachenko, a spokesman for the Federal Security Service, said the woman appeared to be in her 20s and had been shot in the chest and her fingers were broken.

More than 100 women and children had been released since the gunmen in camouflage stormed into the theater, Moscow police spokesman Valery Gribakin said. The freed hostages were sobbing and shaking as they emerged from the theater which holds 1,163 people.

And even as the Chechen rebels were threatening to kill their hostages, intermediaries entered the building earlier Thursday bearing a white flag and won the release of five more captives.

Sharpshooters perched on rooftops around the theater less than three miles from the Kremlin.

Distraught relatives tried to reach family members inside the theater. Alina Vlasova, 24, said her sister Marina was so upset when she called from inside the theater that she could barely speak. "They are standing over us with automatic rifles and are getting angrier," Alina said her sister told her.

A pro-rebel Web site, www.kavkaz.org, said Thursday that Russia had seven days to begin withdrawing from Chechnya or the theater would be blown up.

The Web site said the attackers were led by Movsar Barayev, the nephew of warlord Arbi Barayev, who reportedly died last year. The site said some of the women hostage-takers were the widows of Chechen rebels killed fighting the Russians.

President Vladimir Putin canceled his trip this week to the APEC summit in Mexico as the secessionist war that has bedeviled Russia for a decade came terrifyingly home to the nation's capital.

Meeting with security officials Thursday, Putin said "freeing the hostages with the maximum assurance of their safety," was the main goal. He said the raid was planned "in one of the foreign terrorist centers" but did not name it.

The dramatic siege was a bitter blow for Putin, who repeatedly has said Russia has the situation in Chechnya, a mainly Muslim republic in southern Russia, under control. While Putin's popularity remains high, opinion polls show public support for the war dropping in recent months.

In Washington, White House spokesman Sean McCormack said in a statement that "the American government and the American people stand with the people of Russia at this difficult moment. There are no causes or national aspirations that justify the taking of innocent hostages."

U.S. Ambassador Alexander Vershbow said three Americans were among the hostages, but he did not identify them. Citizens of the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Austria, Belarus, Bulgaria, Australia, Azerbaijan, Ukraine and Germany also were confirmed to be among the hostages.

Vershbow said that one of the U.S. citizens had called the embassy on a cell phone, and another one, a woman, called her relatives in the United States and "we heard through them of her presence among the hostages."

"We don't have reliable information as to their condition," Vershbow told reporters.

He said that U.S. security services were working with their Russian counterparts to help free the hostages. He refused to give details of the cooperation.

A senior liberal lawmaker met with the Chechens on Thursday and said they were prepared to allow foreign doctors into the theater to treat some of the hostages who were in bad condition.

Irina Khakamada, a leader of the Union of Right Forces liberal party, also was to meet with Kremlin officials to deliver the hostage-takers' demands, which she did not detail.

Iosif Kobzon, a lawmaker and a popular singer who has performed songs lauding Chechnya, went inside the theater together with Khakamada and said that one of the attackers told him the Chechens were ready to release 50 hostages in exchange for the Moscow-appointed head of Chechnya's administration.

The armed men and women, wearing camouflage clothing, arrived in jeeps just as the second act of the popular musical Nord-Ost was about to begin. The musical ù the title means "North-East" in German ù is based on Veniamin Kaverin's romantic novel Two Captains, which recounts the story of two students and their different destinies during the Soviet times.

Yuli Rybakov, a liberal lawmaker, said the hostage-takers had automatic weapons, grenades, belts with explosives attached, mines and canisters with gasoline with them. One hostage told Echo of Moscow the hostage-takers attached explosives to themselves, theater chairs, support columns and walls, and along aisles.

Hostage Maria Shkolnikova, a physician, was shown on television reading a handwritten statement from the rebels demanding an end to the Chechen war. She also spoke with Echo of Moscow radio by cell phone and said hostage-takers wanted to talk with representatives of Doctors Without Borders. She said the Chechen said they might release the foreign hostages after those talks.

"People are close to a nervous breakdown," said Shkolnikova, adding that the hostages were being fed water and chocolate.

Several hostages, speaking by cell phone to various Russian television stations and news agencies, pleaded with Russian authorities not to use force. Previous attempts by Russian authorities to resolve similar large-scale hostage incidents involving Chechens ended in bloodshed.

In 1995, Chechen rebel leader Shamil Basayev and his fighters briefly took more than 1,000 hostages in southern Russia and then escaped back into Chechnya. More than 100 civilians died. In a January 1996 raid on the southern Russian town of Kizlyar, rebels took hundreds of hostages at a local hospital. Some 78 people were killed.

In an apparent attempt to dampen the anger of ethnic Russians, members of the Chechen community in Moscow volunteered to replace the hostages, especially children, police spokesman Gribakin said.

Russian forces left Chechnya in 1996 after a disastrous two-year war but returned in 1999 after rebels raided a neighboring region and Russian authorities blamed rebels for a series of apartment bombings in Russia that killed more than 300 people.
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« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2002, 01:27:24 PM »

Backgroud material......

www.chechnyafree.ru/index.php?section=traditionseng&lng=eng


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« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2002, 07:56:25 PM »

Chechen Gunmen Threaten to Begin Killing Hostages at Dawn

Friday, October 25, 2002

MOSCOWáùáChechens holding about 600 hostages in a Moscow theater released eight children Friday and then set a dawn Saturday deadline to begin killing the rest of their captives if Russia does not agree to pull its army out of Chechnya.

Shortly afterward, Nikolai Patrushev, head of the Federal Security Service, said the approximately 50 rebels' lives would be guaranteed if they freed all hostages ù including 30 children and 75 foreigners.

The gunmen holding hundreds of captives in a Moscow theater released four of their hostages who were from Azerbaijan, bringing the total number freed Friday to 19, Kremlin official Alexander Machevsky said.

The hostage-takers released eight children Friday afternoon and let seven adults go earlier. However, their reported promises to free the estimated 75 foreigners, including three Americans, were not fulfilled.

Daria Morgunova, a spokeswoman for the theater where the hostages were seized Wednesday night as they watched a popular musical, said the dawn (midnight EDT) deadline was relayed to her in a cell phone call from an actor being held hostage.

Patrushev made the Russian offer after a meeting with President Vladimir Putin, who was later quoted as saying the Kremlin was "open for any contacts."

"We are conducting talks and will conduct talks, hoping that they will bring positive results in freeing the hostages," Patrushev said.

Later Friday, Aslambek Aslakhanov, a lawmaker from Chechnya in the federal parliament, journalist Anna Politkovskaya and two Red Cross representatives entered the building for a new round of negotiations with the rebels, according to Alexander Machevsky, a Kremlin official.

"I was stunned to see the hostages' mood. They were preparing to die," Politkovskaya told reporters when she emerged from the theater after a first visit earlier Friday during which she convinced the rebels to accept a delivery of water for the hostages.

Deputy Interior Minister Vladimir Vasiliyev charged that Chechen rebel leader Aslan Maskhadov was behind the attack, and Russian networks broadcast a videotape of Maskhadov, apparently made sometime since June, in an effort to prove the link.

The tape shows Maskhadov saying rebels have shifted from guerrilla warfare to an "offensive" strategy and adding, "I am certain that in the final stage there will be a still more unique action, similar to the jihad, that will liberate our land from the Russian aggressors."

There had been hope earlier Friday for a peaceful end to the standoff, when the rebels freed the eight children and reportedly promised to free 75 foreign captives. But negotiations broke own.

The reason for the breakdown was not specified. Alexander Zharkov, head of the Russian Red Cross, said earlier that copies of the passports of some hostages were given to the gunmen.

The hostages include Americans, Britons, Dutch, Australians, Austrians and Germans, and embassies were requested to send representatives to the scene to meet their freed citizens, Federal Security Service spokesman Sergei Ignatchenko said.

An Oklahoma City woman, Jean Booker, said the State Department reported her son, Sandy Alan Booker, 49, who was vacationing in Russia, was among the captives. He lives in the Oklahoma capital as well.

"We're very concerned that no other hostages have been freed and that the terrorists are not prepared to discuss the release of other hostages," U.S. Ambassador Alexander Vershbow said minutes after the children were freed.

The rebels, including women who claim to be widows of ethnic insurgents, have demanded that Russia withdraw its troops from the Caucasus province of Chechnya. Earlier, a Web site linked to the rebels said they would blow up the theater if the Russians did not withdraw in seven days.

The freed children, dressed in winter coats and one of them clutching a stuffed bear toy with aviator goggles, appeared to be in good health as they were accompanied by Red Cross representatives. A Swiss citizen was among the group of children, ages 6-12.

NTV television quoted one girl as saying she was fine but she was very worried about her mother still inside the theater.

So far 54 hostages have been released, and about 100 people were believed to have escaped during the confusing first minutes of the hostage-taking. On Thursday, two women raced to freedom under fire from a grenade launcher. Their escape came after medics dragged the body of a young woman from the theater. She was shot in the chest and was the only known fatality of the siege. She reportedly was killed as she tried to move around inside the theater after the attack began.

Several dozen cast members of the show that was in progress when the rebels stormed the facility Wednesday night gathered near the theater Friday afternoon. With tears running down their faces, they sang songs from the show and read an appeal to Putin to end the crisis peacefully.

Seven Russian men and women released earlier Friday were receiving medical care, but Ignatchenko declined to say why they were chosen. Officials expressed hopes that the approximately 30 children among the captives would be freed Friday as well.

Russian NTV crews were allowed inside with a doctor Friday and videotape was broadcast showing three male captors ù in camouflage and carrying Kalashnikov-style rifles ù sitting in what appeared to be a kitchen.

Two wore black masks. The television identified a third man, who wore no mask, as group leader Movsar Barayev, a nephew of rebel warlord Arbi Barayev, who reportedly died last year.

Two women in the group of rebels wore robes with Arabic script on the head coverings. Only their eyes were exposed, and they cradled pistols against their chests.

The women had what looked to be explosives wrapped in tape around their waists. The packages were wired to a small button the women carried in their hands.

The captors made no comments in the broadcast footage, which also later included a brief clip of six women hostages guarded by a female attacker.

Hostages gave varying reports on conditions inside the theater.

"We are safe and sound, it's warm and we have water and there's nothing else we need in a situation like this," hostage Anna Adrianova told a radio station early Friday.

She said the hostages were pleading with Russian leaders to end the crisis without force.

Another hostage said the situation inside the theater was tense and conditions were worsening. The captives had not received food or water and were using the theater's orchestra pit as a toilet.

Yelena Malyonkina, also a spokeswoman for the "Nord-Ost" musical being staged in the theater, said captive production official Anatoly Glazychev told her a bomb was placed in the center of the theater and the stage and aisles were mined.

"Both the terrorists and hostages are nervous," Malyonkina said.

Ignatchenko said some hostages were sympathizing with their captors' and calling relatives by cell phones to ask them to stage anti-war demonstrations in Moscow.

About 100 protesters arrived as dawn broke Friday, carrying banners and chanting anti-war slogans, pushing against metal police barriers. Several said they were responding to requests to protest in calls from relatives.

Putin said the audacious raid was planned by terrorists based outside Russia, and the Qatar-based satellite television channel Al-Jazeera broadcast statements allegedly made by some hostage-takers.

"I swear by God we are more keen on dying than you are keen on living," a black-clad male said in remarks believed to have been recorded Wednesday. "Each one of us is willing to sacrifice himself for the sake of God and the independence of Chechnya."

The hostage-taking occurred less than three miles from the Kremlin and further undermined claims by Putin and other Russian officials that the situation is under control in Chechnya, where Russian soldiers suffer casualties daily in skirmishes or mine explosions.

Over the past decade, Chechens or their sympathizers have been involved in a number of bold, often bloody hostage-taking situations in southern Russian provinces, especially in Dagestan. Nearly 200 hundred hostages and rescuers died in two of operations
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« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2002, 10:39:10 AM »

MOSCOW: Russians control theatre, rebel leader killed, hostages being released

MOSCOW (AP) - Special forces troops took control of a Moscow theater before sunrise Saturday where hundreds of hostages were being held by Chechen rebels, killing their leader and freeing all their captives.

At least 20 bodies were seen being taken from the theater by an AP photographer after a night of explosions and gunfire.

Some of the bodies were hostages, Russian news agencies said.

Sergei Ignatchenko, a spokesman for the Federal Security Service, said most of the hostage takers had been killed.

He said the operation to free the hostages began when the Chechen rebels began executing the captives.

Earlier, officials said two hostages were killed and two injured and that the hostage-takers had begun to execute their captives.

Two women escaped as soldiers armed with assault rifles were seen moving toward the theater, and two more ran from the building later while ambulances poured into the southeast Moscow neighborhood where the crisis began Wednesday evening.

The hostage-takers had earlier threatened to begin killing their captives before sunrise Saturday. After the two deaths, officials reached the captors by phone but then quickly said their negotiations had failed.

Movsar Barayev - a young warlord who inherited a gang of rebels from his uncle, the infamous Arbi Barayev - had led the group of as many as 50 heavily armed men and women into the theater in a bold raid just 4.5 kilometers (2.7 miles) from the Kremlin.

Late Friday, a mediator who met with the gunmen said they promised to release the hostages if Russian President Vladimir Putin declared an end to the war in Chechnya and began withdrawing troops.

The new demands were brought out of the theater just before midnight Friday by Anna Politkovskaya, a Russian journalist who is respected by Chechens for her reporting on the war and was called in by the rebels to mediate.

Asked if the captors seemed to be preparing to start killing the hostages, Politkovskaya said they told her: "We're going to wait only a little while.''

Politkovskaya listed rebel demands, and foremost among them were Putin's declaration of an end to the war and the start of a Russian withdrawal from one region anywhere in Chechnya to show good will. If verified, the rebels promised to free the hostages.

She said the captors agreed to her suggestion that verification be done by Lord Judd, a member of the Council of Europe who has made many trips to investigate the human rights situation in Chechnya.

The demand was the first time that the gunmen revealed specific conditions for freeing the hostages, estimated to number as many as 800 and include Americans, Britons, Dutch, Australians, Canadians, Austrians and Germans.

Earlier, the captors demanded that Russia withdraw from Chechnya.

Putin said Friday that "the preservation of the lives of the people who remain in the theater building'' was his overriding concern.

Federal Security Service chief Nikolai Patrushev said after meeting with Putin that the hostage-takers' lives would be guaranteed if they freed their captives.

Daria Morgunova, a spokeswoman for the musical, told The Associated Press that an actor who was among the hostages called her to say that the captors had threatened to begin killing hostages at dawn. She said she received the call about two hours before Patrushev's statement.

The heavily armed hostage-takers had said they were ready to die and take their hostages with them if their demands weren't met, and witnesses said they had wired the building and themselves with explosives.

The gunmen released 19 hostages Friday, including eight children aged between 6 and 12. Dressed in winter coats - and one clutching a teddy bear with aviator goggles - the children appeared healthy as they left the building accompanied by Red Cross workers in the afternoon.

Seven adults were freed earlier in the day, and four citizens of Azerbaijan were released after dark, Russian officials said.

Politkovskaya, a reporter for the independent Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, arranged earlier for the hostage-takers to accept deliveries of water and warm meals for the captives.

She was one of several influential figures who entered the theater late Friday in efforts to mediate with the captors.

They also included former Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov and Ruslan Aushev, the former president of Ingushetia, a region bordering Chechnya.

The hostage-takers have derided the Kremlin for refraining from sending high-level officials to negotiate.

Deputy Interior Minister Vladimir Vasilyev was quoted by news agencies as saying unsuccessful attempts had been made to contact Aslan Maskhadov, a rebel leader who was president of Chechnya between Russian troops' withdrawal in 1996 and resumption of the war three years later.

"The leader of the terrorist act is Maskhadov. It was organized with his participation,'' Vasilyev said in televised comments, while state-run Russian networks broadcast footage meant to prove the link.

From a tape apparently made sometime since June, the footage showed Maskhadov saying rebels have shifted from guerrilla warfare to an "offensive'' strategy and adding: "I am certain that in the final stage we will carry out a still more unique action, like the jihad, and with this operation we will liberate our land from the Russian aggressors.''

Hostages gave varying accounts of conditions in the theater Friday, with one saying the captives hadn't received food or water and been using the orchestra pit as a toilet.

A group of about 80 demonstrators outside the theater carried banners and chanted anti-war slogans. Several said they were responding to requests from relatives who were among the hostages.

Alexander Petrov, a demonstrator who said he had friends inside the theater, said previously he had not been opposed to the Chechen war, but now "what way out is there?''

Dozens of Nord-Ost cast members showed up later Friday to sing tunes from the musical, tears coursing down their faces, in a gesture of support and concern for their comrades inside. - AP

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« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2002, 04:47:58 PM »

Sadly, it looks like a great many hostages have been killed by the Russians, with some sort of nerve gas (and they're not telling what it was). And many more are in critical condition still. I realize that situation was desperate, but this doesn't sit well with me at all. It seems like a cowardly way to overcome the captors. What do you all think about it?
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« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2002, 07:22:00 PM »

Metropolitan Laurus on the Terrorist Act in Moscow
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