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Beslan is a town and the administrative center of Pravoberezhny District of the Republic of North Ossetia–Alania, Russia. Population: In terms of population, Beslan is the third largest town in the republic behind Vladikavkaz and Mozdok.GeographyBeslan lies about 29km north of Vladikavkaz, the capital of the republic, and 97km southeast of Nalchik in the Kabardino-Balkar Republic, The city is about 950mi south of Moscow. It is close to the border with the Republic of Ingushetia.HistoryIt was founded in 1847 by migrants from elsewhere in Ossetia and was unofficially called Beslanykau ("the settlement of Beslan") after a local lord, Beslan Tulatov. In official use, however, the town was known after Tulatov's surname as Tulatovo or Tulatovskoye. It was renamed "Iriston" (Ossetia) in 1941. In 1950, when the town was rapidly industrializing, it was renamed Beslan.Beslan school hostage crisisOn September 1, 2004, Beslan's Secondary School No. 1 was seized by a group of at least thirty-two Islamic terrorists related to the Second Chechen War. The siege ended on September 3 with a bloody shootout between the terrorists and the Russian security forces. According to official data, 333 people were killed, 186 of them children, and hundreds more wounded. All but one of the hostage-takers were killed. The survivor was arrested. He was tried and convicted and sentenced to imprisonment.
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