An elder woman sitting on a bench in the gym of Beslan school, Beslan, September 3, 2020. Photo by Tamara Agkatseva for the Caucasian Knot

05 September 2020, 13:02

Relatives of Beslan victims point to Russia's demonstrative non-fulfilment of ECtHR's decision

Russia ignores the decision of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) and refuses to investigate the circumstances that had led to numerous deaths of hostages in the school seized by militants in Beslan 16 years ago, activists have stated.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on September 1, 2004, terrorists took 1128 hostages in a gym of the Beslan school No. 1. The special operation to release the hostages was finished on September 3, 2004. As a result of the terror act, 334 people were killed, including 186 children, and other 810 people were injured.

The victims waited for three months after the ECtHR's decision in 2017 and filed petitions with a demand to investigate the lawfulness of the use of tanks, flamethrowers and grenade launchers by law enforcers, Ella Kesaeva, the head of the "Voice of Beslan" Committee, told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent.

On April 13, 2017, the ECtHR found a violation of the rights of relatives of those killed and wounded in the captured Beslan school in 2004, and awarded compensations to 409 applicants in the total amount of 2.955 million euros, and 88,000 euros as compensation of legal expenses. In September 2019, the Russian Ministry of Justice (MoJ) reported that the compensations had been paid out. The organizations that unite the victims of the terror act stated that Russia failed to fulfil all the decisions of the ECtHR.

"The essence of the above petitions was to conduct an investigation into the facts revealed by the ECtHR. During 2017 and early 2018, we lodged over a hundred petitions, and then many times appealed against the refusals. We were repeatedly told by investigating bodies that [the inquiry] had been denied," Ms Kesaeva has explained.

She believes that the absence of conclusions from the Beslan tragedy is the reason for the demoralization of Russian authorities. "No conclusions have been drawn from Beslan. Impunity breeds crimes; Russia has turned into aggressor, because responsibility has not come; most [people] have closed their eyes. And these people continue sitting in power – those who deliberately shed children's blood in Beslan," Ella Kesaeva has emphasized.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on September 5, 2020 at 00:44 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Magomed Tuayev; Source: CK correspondent

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