51 former hostages of Beslan crisis still missing

Pathologists say the majority of the bodies are hard to identify without a genetic expertise

Three hundred and thirty-one people were killed in the terrorist act in Beslan, including 172 children (26 of them died from injuries at hospitals afterwards), the informational department of the Russian Emergency Ministry told Interfax. “Two hundred and forty people, including 157 children are currently staying at hospitals in Moscow, Vladikavkaz, Beslan, Rostov-on-Don and Oryol,” a message from the ministry said.

The Office of the Prosecutor General presented different information: 330 were killed in the hostage crisis. According to the latest information, the whereabouts of 51 hostages of the Beslan school are still not known, acting director of the prosecuting administration in North Caucasus, Nikolay Khazikov, told Interfax Wednesday. “Former hostages submitted 51 statements about missing relatives to the Interior Ministry of North Ossetia,” Khazikov said.

The official also informed about the identification of the hostages, who died as a result of the school siege. “The bodies of 51 hostages still remain unidentified. Twenty-five bodies have been identified from 76, delivered to the 124th defense ministry laboratory,” the spokesman for the Office of the Prosecutor General said.

Pathologists say that the majority of the bodies are very hard and even impossible to identify without a genetic expertise.

Law-enforcement officers organized special files for each of the missing hostages. Each file contains three photographs (the right, left profiles and the full face), as well as the typical description of the missing individual.

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Author`s name Olga Savka