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Russian Authorities Negotiate In Southern Hostage Crisis

1 September 2004 -- Russia's security service says negotiations are under way with an armed gang that took over a school today and is holding more than 130 children hostage, along with an undetermined number of teachers and parents.

Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) chief Valerii Andreev said no details of the negotiations in North Ossetia with the hostage takers, including their demands, will be made public.

There are conflicting reports on the number of people who have been killed since the siege began in the southern town of Beslan. Andreev said that at least two people have died.

The incident comes one day after a suicide bomber killed at least nine people in Moscow, and a week after 90 people were killed when two Russian airliners were blown up in midair.

The UN Security Council has agreed to Andreev's request for an emergency meeting tonight on the series of terrorist attacks in Russia.


For more on the Russian hostage crisis in North Ossetia, click here.