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Friday, 8 November, 2002, 22:32 GMT
Chechen hostage-taker's house 'destroyed'
A female Chechen rebel
Some of the 50 or so Chechen rebels were women
Local officials in Chechnya say the home of one of the Chechen hostage-takers who was killed in the Moscow theatre siege last month has been blown up.

Aset Gishnurkayeva, who was one of the women hostage-takers, used to live in the Chechen town of Achkhoi-Martan.
President Vladimir Putin
Amnesty International wants the EU to confront Mr Putin on Chechnya

The town official, Shamil Burayev, was quoted by the Interfax news agency as saying that a group of armed people in camouflage uniforms surrounded the house late on Thursday.

They ordered the residents of the house - two women and two children - to leave the building and then destroyed it, Mr Burayev said.

There were no reports of injuries.

'Unacceptable'

No one has claimed responsibility for the action, and a criminal investigation has been launched into the case.

"The blasting of a house... clearly has a political message," Kremlin human rights commissioner Oleg Mironov said.

In terms of human rights abuse, Chechnya is the 'infectious sore' that colours so much of what is happening in Russia

Dick Oosting,
Amnesty International

"Such a terrible response to a terrorist act tells us that people have lost patience and want a peaceful life."

Abdul-Khakim Sultygov, the presidential human rights envoy to Chechnya, described the destruction of Gishnurkayeva's house as "absolutely unacceptable".

Meanwhile, Amnesty International urged the European Union on Friday to put alleged human rights abuses in Chechnya high in the agenda of the talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Brussels on Monday.

"In terms of human rights abuse, Chechnya is the 'infectious sore' that colours so much of what is happening in Russia," Dick Oosting, head of Amnesty's EU office, said in a statement.

European diplomats said the EU would raise their concerns over human rights in Chechnya when talking to Mr Putin.


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30 Oct 02 | Entertainment
02 Nov 02 | From Our Own Correspondent
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