Memorial board with the names of the Dubrovka terror act victims. Photo by Alexander Stepanov for the "Caucasian Knot"

27 October 2022, 18:51

Relatives of victims of Dubrovka terror act declared their no confidence in investigation

Over the past 20 years, the former hostages and relatives of those who perished in the Dubrovka Theatrical Centre still have no information about the course of the inquiry and results thereof; therefore, there is no hope for the completeness and objectivity of the inquiry, participants in the commemorative event in Moscow have stated.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that Russia annually celebrates anniversaries of the terror act in the above Theatrical Centre. The film "Conference" was timed to the 20th anniversary of the tragedy, but it gathered only a few dozen spectators.

On October 23, 2002, during the musical "Nord-Ost" staged at the Theatrical Centre, militants led by Movsar Baraev took 916 people as hostage. In exchange for their lives they demanded to stop the hostilities in Chechnya and withdraw federal troops from the republic. The militants' demands were not satisfied; and on October 26, law enforcers conducted an operation to free the hostages by using gas. According to official figures, 130 hostages died; and over 700 others were injured.

On October 26 in Moscow, the funeral ceremony began with a requiem dedication to "Nord-Ost", after which a minute of silence was announced. Relatives of the victims and Christian Maton, the president of the French non-commercial association "France Europe Beslan", laid flowers at the plaque with the names of the victims of the terror act.

The participants in the ceremony in front of the Theatrical Centre lit 130 candles and released the same number of white balloons into the sky – equal to the number of dead hostages.

The mourning event was attended by no more than 100 people, mostly former hostages or victims' relatives.

Dmitry Milovidov, the head of the NGO "Nord-Ost", said that they have no exact statistics on the number of former hostages who died within these 20 years, as well as the accurate data on the diseases of the surviving hostages.

In particular, they learned about the death of the actor, Boris Lapin, who suffered from a tumour of unknown origin. Mr Milovidov listed the pathologies that former hostages most often talk about: hypo- and hyperthermia, loss of hearing and partial of memory, and problems with the endocrine system.

The participants of the commemoration are distrustful of the official investigation and tend to believe that the Russian society has failed to learn all the lessons from the Dubrovka tragedy. According to Olga Milovidova, she and her husband lost their daughter as a result of the terror act: she was among the hostages.

Yulia, a former hostage, and Elena Mikhailovna, the mother of one of the hostages, do not trust the investigation outcomes. At the same time, both believe that the release of the without significant casualties among them was hardly possible.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on October 27, 2022 at 05:17 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Alexander Stepanov Source: СK correspondent

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