Saturday, May 27, 2006

Chechnya: 5-year-old boy shoots 6-year-old girl with pistol in Grozny

From Prague Watchdog:

May 26th 2006 (my translation)

5-year-old boy shoots 6-year-old girl with pistol in Grozny

By Ruslan Isayev

GROZNY, Chechnya – A tragic incident occurred in the Chechen capital yesterday (May 25). A policeman who dropped in at his home for a few minutes left his car unlocked, and his 5-year-old son who was playing in the yard got into it.

In the car the boy discovered his father’s authorized pistol. He began to boast in front of other children and point it at them. At some stage the weapon was fired at a 6-year-old girl from a neighbouring house. The girl died of her injuries on the spot.

An official investigation has been opened, and the policeman who left his authorized weapon unattended has been taken into custody.

Although such cases are very rare in Chechnya, many note that the age of children who know how to use firearms has dropped. It is not at all uncommon for parents, especially officials of the law-enforcement agencies, to teach their children how to handle a sub-machine gun and pistol. There is one purpose - to protect the family in case of necessity.

This dangerous fashion was advertised by the case of a Chechen police officer whose home was attacked by guerrillas. The policeman and his eldest son were killed. His younger son, aged 13, picked up his father’s sub-machine gun and shot several of the attackers in cold blood. The slain policeman was awarded the posthumous title of Hero of Russia, and his surviving son was given a special enrolment in the Suvorov Military College.

For a young teenager to be able to put up such resistance to grown-up men with long experience of fighting would seem impossible. It turned out that the policeman father very often gave his children shooting lessons, training them in the rules of battle.
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