Relieved at end of Moscow hostage crisis, Annan mourns those who died

26 October 2002

Reacting to the end of the hostage crisis which has rocked Moscow in recent days, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today condemned the terrorist practice and extended condolences to all those affected.

"The Secretary-General is deeply relieved to learn of the ending of the hostage situation in the Melnikov Street Theatre in Moscow," a spokesman for Mr. Annan said in a statement released in New York.

Recalling a Security Council resolution adopted on Thursday which demanded the immediate release of all those held captive in the theatre, the statement stressed that the taking of hostages is "a heinous act of terrorism which cannot be justified by any circumstance," adding that action taken in the Russian capital "has ended this unconscionable situation."

The spokesman said the Secretary-General "mourns for those whose lives were lost" in the Moscow incident, and extends condolences to the families of the victims, to Russia, and to other nations whose citizens died.


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