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Last Updated: Wednesday, 8 September, 2004, 07:25 GMT 08:25 UK
Russian TV shows school siege terror
Video footage of the hostages and one of the hostage-takers in the school gym in Beslan
Dramatic video footage from inside the school in Beslan during the siege has been aired on Russian television.

It shows adults and children packed into the school gymnasium as heavily-armed, masked men walk around the room.

Explosives, apparently wired and ready for use, lie on the floor while others are looped around basketball hoops at either end of the gym.

In Beslan residents are to hold more funerals for the more than 300 people killed in the bloody end of the siege.

Blood on floor

Russia's NTV network did not explain how it obtained the pictures from inside the school.

It said the video had been recorded by the hostage-takers.

The footage shows hundreds of hostages crowded into the gym - many with hands above their heads.

We've been to the morgue 10 or 15 times and opened up all the body bags, but Timor is not there
Slava, looking for her nephew
They are still fully clothed - although fanning themselves in the heat - suggesting the video was shot soon after the school was seized.

The camera zooms in on one hostage-taker, standing next to a young boy, with his boot on what NTV said was a book rigged with a detonator.

A woman hostage-taker, clad in a black dress and headscarf, is seen in the doorway holding a pistol.

There is also footage of blood on the floor, and a fire in another building on the school premises.

The BBC's Steven Eke in Moscow says that for many families in Beslan this will be the last footage of their loved ones alive.

DNA tests

The grief-stricken town held a third day of burials for the victims, many of them children, on Tuesday.

Relatives of around 200 people still missing were queuing up to give blood to compare to DNA tests on the bodies that remain unidentified.

Moscow rally

Officials say 107 bodies were damaged beyond recognition by the fire and the explosions.

The BBC's Sarah Rainsford in Beslan says anguished relatives have had to go through body bags themselves, as there are no accurate lists of victims.

"We've been to the morgue 10 or 15 times already. We've opened up all the body bags but Timor is not there," said Slava, who was looking for her 10-year-old nephew.

"We've asked officials where his remains are and no-one can tell us. Where did so many children disappear to?"


Meanwhile, tens of thousands of people took to the streets in Moscow as part of a government-endorsed rally against terrorism - one of several around the country.

Muscovites brandished banners, religious insignia and Russian flags in a massive show of unity during a second day of official mourning for the victims of the siege.

Map of the North Caucasus

The BBC's Rob Cameron in Moscow says people are still consumed with anger at the events in Beslan.

"How can you kill children and shoot them? I came because Russia was slapped in the face and we will not take it," a pensioner named as Valery told AFP news agency.

But correspondents say there is also rising opposition to the Russian authorities' handling of the siege.

Newspapers have been posing awkward questions, such as whether the security services really had no plans to storm the school.

Some have accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of using the rallies to deflect public anger over unanswered questions.

The BBC's Steven Eke
"The images appeared just hours after Russia held mass demonstrations against terrorism"

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