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Home >> Opinion
UPDATED: 09:19, September 06, 2004
A call for the world to unite against terrorism
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"Tragic," "despicable," "inhumane," "cowardly," "barbaric," "evil" and "astonishing" are the terms world leaders used to describe the slaughter of hostages including school children in Beslan, Russia.

The three-day school siege in the North Ossetian town of Beslan in Russia reached a bloody and tragic climax on Friday.

According to latest reports, 338 hostages, of which 158 were children, died.

"What happened was a terrorist act that was inhuman and unprecedented in its cruelty," Russian President Putin said in a national televised speech.

Russia has been plagued by recent terrorist attacks.

The school hostage-taking followed a suicide bomb attack outside a Moscow subway station on Tuesday that killed eight people, and a near-simultaneous crash of two Russian planes on August 24, after what officials believe were explosions on board. Ninety died. Chechen separatists are suspected in all three attacks.

It seems that a Russian version of 9/11 has unfolded.

"It is a challenge not to the president, the parliament and the government but a challenge to all of Russia, to all of our people. It is an attack on our nation," Putin said in his televised speech.

The Russian Government's strong determination and resolve not to submit to terrorism is well placed.

A wavering will to fight terrorism can only embolden terrorists. As a result, it is necessary to fight terrorism around the globe with one mind and one heart.

Terrorism, which disregards basic human moral ethics, is simply used by extremists to advance political or religious ambition.

Human life is the target.

Although the world has been stepping up its efforts to clamp down on terrorism since 9/11, it runs even more rampant.

The Bali nightclub blast that killed 202 in Indonesia, the train bombing in Madrid, Spain, earlier this year, demonstrate the evil will to strike and kill innocent people all over the world.

The school siege in Russia is just another grim reminder not only of that, but also of the need for all human beings to join the fight against it.

A global united front is critical in winning the war against terrorism, an enemy that respects no national boundary.

Terror networks now have a frightening global reach.

An unidentified Russian intelligence official was quoted by the ITAR-Tass news agency as saying the school siege was financed by Abu Omar As-Seyf, an Arab who allegedly represents al-Qaida in Chechnya, and masterminded by Chechen rebel leader Shamil Basayev.

ITAR-Tass news agency also reported that one of the Beslan attackers was black and nine others were Arabs, indicating that it involved people from several countries.

It is clear that without the world's solidarity and unity, terrorism will not be beaten.

Meanwhile, we are left counting lives lost in the name of causes that can never justify such barbarism.

Source: China Daily

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