School No.1 in Beslan. Photo by Alan Tskhurbaev for the Caucasian Knot

31 August 2018, 22:34

North and South Ossetia split concerning mourning for victims of terrors act in Beslan

The authorities of North Ossetia have ignored the request of residents to postpone the start of the academic year from September 1 to September 4 because of the Day of Sorrow for the victims of the terror act in Beslan. Meanwhile, South Ossetia, which is another state the de jure, will celebrate the Day of Knowledge on September 5.

On September 1, 2004, militants took 1128 hostages and kept them in the gym of School No. 1 in Beslan. In total, 334 of them, including 186 children, perished, other 810 persons were injured.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on September 1, 2017, at a press conference on the 13th anniversary of the terror act, Aneta Gadieva, the co-chair of the "Mothers of Beslan" Committee, said that her organization supported the initiative to postpone the start of the academic year to September 4. It should be noted that after the terror act in Beslan, a school year in the Pravoberezhny District of North Ossetia begins on September 4, while in the remaining schools of the republic ‑ on September 1.

Yet on August 17, the Ministry of Education and Science for North Ossetia announced that in all regions of North Ossetia, except for Pravoberezhny District, schoolchildren will hold holiday ceremonies for the Day of Knowledge on September 1.

"Almost all schools of the republic will start the academic year on September 1. The exception will be made for educational institutions of the Pravoberezhny District, where the school year will begin on September 5," announced an official from the Ministry of Education as quoted by the portal "Ossetia News".

It should be noted that, unlike neighbours, South Ossetia pronounced the decision to postpone the start of the academic year from September 1 to September 5 because of the Day of Sorrow for the victims of the Beslan tragedy.

"We believe it is absolutely wrong to hold festivities these days. Therefore, as a sign of support and sympathy for people who have lost their relatives and friends, it was decided to start a new academic year on September 5," announced Natalia Gassieva, Minister of Education and Science for South Ossetia, as quoted by the IA "Res" on August 14.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on August 31, 2018 at 07:42 pm MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

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