29 September 2005 -- Russian Deputy Prosecutor-General Nikolai Shepel said today there are no "procedural reasons" to replace prosecutors in the trial of Nurpashi Kulaev, the only living suspect involved in the 2004 Beslan hostage crisis.
Shepel's remarks came after several victims of the Beslan crisis accused him of failing to ensure an unbiased probe into the tragedy.
He said prosecutors have enough evidence to bring charges against Kulaev.
Susanna Dudieva, who heads the Beslan Mothers Committee, today said that Shepel should be replaced as chief state prosecutor in Kulaev's trial.
"I believe that Nikolai Ivanovich (Shepel) has failed to ensure an objective investigation from the very beginning, which was a year ago," Dudieva said. "Many questions, many problems have arisen as a result of that."
Kulaev is facing eight criminal charges, including terrorism, hostage taking, and murder.
(Russian Service/ITAR-TASS)For RFE/RL's full coverage of the Beslan tragedy, see "Remembering Beslan"