Black September of Beslan
Categories: ChildrenBy Pictolic https://pictolic.com/en/article/black-september-of-beslan
17 years ago, on September 1, 2004, in Beslan, a group of terrorists seized school No. 1 in the Right-Bank district of the city.
The line dedicated to the Day of Knowledge was postponed due to the heat from the traditional 10 am to 9 am. In total, according to RIA, there were 895 students and 59 teachers and technical staff of the school on the line. The number of parents who came to take their children to school is unknown. There were a lot of kids on the line: out of nine Beslan kindergartens, four did not work due to prolonged repairs, and the parents brought the children with them.
A group of armed militants drove up to the school building on an awning GAZ-66 and VAZ-2107. Randomly shooting into the air, the terrorists drove more than 1,100 people into the school building — children, their relatives and school employees. In the confusion, from 50 to 150 high school students managed to escape.
Most of the hostages were herded into the main gym, the rest - into the gym, showers and dining room. Ammunition, heavy weapons and explosives were unloaded from the GAZ-66. The terrorists were thoroughly armed: 22 Kalashnikov assault rifles, including with under-barrel grenade launchers, two PKK-74 hand machine guns, two PKM machine guns, one Kalashnikov tank machine gun, two RPG‑7 hand-held anti-tank grenade launchers and RPG-18 Mukha grenade launchers. The approaches to the gym and the gym itself were mined.
"If they kill any of us, we will shoot 50 people, if they injure any of us — we will kill 20 people. If 5 of us are killed, we will blow up everything. If the lights and communications are turned off for a minute, we will shoot 10 people, " the terrorists immediately said in a note transmitted at 11: 35 through a woman released from school. In addition, they demanded the President of North Ossetia Alexander Dzasokhov, the head of Ingushetia Murat Zyazikov and the children's doctor Leonid Roshal for negotiations.
Between 16: 00 and 16: 30, an explosion occurred in the school building and shots were fired.
At about 19:00, the militants got in touch by mobile phone. They refused the offer to hand over food and water to the hostages, arguing that they may contain psychotropic substances.
Early in the morning on September 2, the terrorists refused to exchange children for adults.
At 16 o'clock, the former president of Ingushetia, Ruslan Aushev, entered the captured school. Negotiations with Ruslan Aushev on the transfer of water and food did not lead to anything, but 24 women with infants were released from school.
Meanwhile, the heat, lack of water and the stench worsened the condition of the children: many of them lost consciousness. The hostages were forced to eat the petals of the flowers they brought and drink their own urine, because by that time all water sources were blocked by the terrorists.
On September 3, at 13:04, two powerful explosions occurred successively in the gym at short intervals. A few minutes later, the hostages began to jump out through the windows and run out through the front door into the school yard. The terrorists opened fire on them with machine guns and grenade launchers, killing 29 people.
Five minutes after the first explosions, an anti-terrorist operation began, in which two operational combat groups of the Central Security Service of the FSB took part. Mi-8 combat helicopters appeared over the school.
At 13:31, the terrorists detonated explosive devices previously installed in the captured school, the roof collapsed. A panic began. The militants randomly shot at people.
At 13:50, Russian special forces entered the school building. Another part of the Russian special forces was fighting with terrorists who had taken refuge in a residential area near the school. The house where the terrorists were located was shot by tanks.
At about 14: 08, almost the entire school, except for the mined gym, was under the control of special forces. They began to take out the wounded and the dead. Ambulances and stretchers were not enough. Local residents gathered around the school came to the rescue.
At 15:50, special forces broke into the school's gym building and began clearing it. The military operation in Beslan was completed by the evening of September 3.
As a result of the terrorist attack in Beslan, 334 people were killed, most of them were hostages, including 186 children from 1 to 17 years old. By the morning of September 4, hospitals in Beslan and Vladikavkaz received more than 700 wounded, more than half of whom were children. From 2 to 6 people died in 66 families, and 17 children were orphaned. For comparison: during the four years of the Great Patriotic War, Beslan lost 357 men on various fronts.
During the storming of the building, 10 employees of the Central Security Service of the FSB were killed.
The organization of the terrorist act was assumed by the field commander Shamil Basayev. According to RIA, out of 27 (according to other sources — 32) terrorists, only one remained alive — Nurpasha Kulayev.
Now he is serving a life sentence in the Polar Owl colony, located in the village of Harp in the Priuralsky district of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug.