Trial of terrorists continues in Pyatigorsk

The trial considering the preparations for an armed seizure of power in Kabardin-Balkaria and Karachai-Circassia continued on Wednesday in Pyatigorsk. The five-day interval was used by the lawyers for a more detailed familiarisation of their clients with the case. In the dock are sixteen active members of the Wahhabi movement whose aim was to create an Islamic state in the North Caucasus. The investigation, which was conducted by the department of the Russian Prosecutor's Office in the North Caucasus and department of the Federal Security Service for the North Caucasus, has established that the extremists have been acting in the territory of the region since 1996. The leadership of the criminal community included Chechen terrorists Shamil Basayev, Hattab, Achemez Gochiyayev, Hazyr Salpagarov and other heads of illegal armed units. Young people, drawn in Wahhabi communes, then underwent military and ideological training in the Caucasus and Taliban camps in the Chechen republic. This bandit group had in service automatic weapons, grenade launchers, explosives and up-to-date communication facilities. The defendants are accused of the organisation of a number of terrorist acts in the North Caucasus and of conducting military operations against the federal forces in Chechnya.

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