CNN BREAKING NEWS
Female Hostage in Moscow Standoff Shot
Aired October 24, 2002 - 10:50 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: There is a lot happening in the world now, including in Moscow. I know you heard about it by now. But about 40 Chechen rebels took hostage about 700 people in a movie theater in Moscow. Those people are still being held.
Ryan Chilcote is on the scene. And we have heard of one hostage being killed today. Can you tell us about that?
RYAN CHILCOTE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. The Federal Security Service saying that they have confirmed the first casualty of this hostage crisis. Preliminary reports are that she's a 20-year-old woman. She appears to have been shot in the chest. She also had a lot of bruises on her body. Some of the preliminary reports we're hearing suggest that she might have died yesterday when these gunmen seized this theater hall and took the entire audience hostage.
COSTELLO: Brian, we understand that the fingers on one of her hands were broken. This sort of suggests torture. Could that be happening inside?
CHILCOTE: You know, I wouldn't want to speculate. I don't know exactly. I haven't seen her body. I only know that television cameras caught -- captured that body being brought out of the theater. It was obviously a very sad moment here. Earlier in the day, the first five hostages to be released as the result of talks came out. But then this. Obviously sad news, and very serious situation here. We have 700 hostages inside being guarded by 40 gunmen who say that if this building is stormed, they will kill the hostages, they will start killing these hostages. In fact, they're saying that for every gunman that's injured in any kind of or wounded in any kind of attack that Russian forces might want to launch to try to free these hostages, they will kill, they will execute 10 hostages.
COSTELLO: So what are Russian authorities doing right now to end this thing?
CHILCOTE: Well, Russian authorities are doing several things. One, they've pulled back all security forces, all that one can see, anyway, from the immediate vicinity to this theater. They've also moved cars out. And they've moved all pedestrians, all local residents from this area. And they've also set up staging areas where obviously a very serious security presence here of troops from the defense ministry, from the interior ministry, Russia's most elite troops gathered here and hanging out back in the shadows farther away from the theater.
There are several initiatives, sort of several groups trying to talk to these hostage takers. We know that there are at least four members of the Russian parliament who have spoken with the hostage takers.
COSTELLO: Brian, thank you for the update.
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