European Court Faults Russia’s Handling of 2004 Beslan School Siege

The school siege, in the town of Beslan in North Ossetia, a part of the North Caucasus region in Russia, began around 9 a.m. on Sept. 1, 2004 — the first day of school — when more than 30 militants stormed School No. 1, taking more than 1,100 hostages, including more than 770 children. The militants were followers of the Chechen warlord Shamil Basayev.

It was one in a string of attacks in Russia in the early years of Mr. Putin’s leadership, including the takeover of a Moscow theater in October 2002, which ended in a bloody assault by special forces that resulted in the deaths of more than 100 hostages.

In 2004, Chechen militants struck with frightening ferocity. They killed more than 40 people on a crowded subway in Moscow on Feb. 6;

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