A sidebar to the Russian school tragedy:
Grozny. Thirty relatives of Chechen separatist leader Aslan Maskhadov, including his wife, have been led away to an unknown place by masked men, said Maskhadov?s spokesman Ahmed Zakaev on radio the Echo of Moscow, AFP reported.
“It happened on September 2nd in Chechnya, while I was negotiating with North Ossetian President Alexander Dzasohov and with former President of Ingushetia Ruslan Aushev for a possible involvement of Maskhadov in settling the hostage crisis in Beslan. The parents of Maskhadov are also among the captives,” Zakaev said. “Since then, we have had no information about their fate,” he added.
Maskhadov insists he had nothing to do with the hostage crisis. While it wouldn’t be unusual for a Westerner to deny involvement in a horrorshow like this, it fits with a report from MosNews that Chechen resistance forces deny planning the recent terror attacks in Russia.
A militant Muslim group called the Islambouli Brigades earlier claimed responsibility for downing two passenger plains and for the bomb blast in Moscow. The legitimacy of the group and the authenticity of such statements have not been verified.