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#13 - JRL 7004
Hearing of Nord-Ost siege victims' lawsuits set for Jan 17

MOSCOW. Jan 4 (Interfax) - The Tverskoi court of Moscow has scheduled the hearing of 14 lawsuits filed by former Nord-Ost hostages and their relatives for January 17, the victims' lawyer Igor Trunov told Interfax on Saturday.

The hearing of another 24 lawsuits containing requests for compensation for moral and material damage will take place in the same court on January 16, he said.

At the same time, the Tverskoi court has so far declined to start legal proceedings on 10 new lawsuits worth $8.56 million, Trunov said. It is not clear why Judge Marina Gorbacheva has declined to do so, since she has already started legal proceedings on 38 lawsuits worth $39.21, he said.

The victims' lawyer and the former hostages who came to the court with him have asked the chairman of the court for assistance.

In the meantime, Moscow Deputy Mayor Valery Shantsev told Ekho Moskvy radio in regard to the lawsuits that "we do not feel guilty. We did everything that needed to be done. We are waiting for the court to determine if we are guilty."

Shantsev has called the lawsuits "strange." "You can't read only one article of a law. All laws should be considered together with the Constitution to demand compensation for damage. And in this case, only one article in the new law on terrorism was read, under which compensation of damages is paid out of the budget of the region of the federation where the terrorist act occurred. But one should determine whether there was any blame," he said.

Shantsev stressed that the Moscow authorities had done everything they could do in the situation they were in and that all the victims had been paid compensation from the budget funds.

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