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NZ condemns hostage-takers

NZ condemns hostage-takers

The world will forever condemn those who used children as political pawns in hostage taking, Foreign Minister Phil Goff said today.

"The appalling and tragic loss of life, and injury to hundreds of children will only work against whatever cause the terrorists might have thought they were promoting,” Mr Goff said.

"New Zealand unconditionally condemns the acts of any terrorists who arbitrarily put at risk and take the lives of innocent people. The fact that children have been used in this way reflects the lack of humanity of those responsible, and the fact that contemporary terrorism has no bottom line.

“I have written to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to express New Zealand’s sympathy and concern for the government and people of Russia. Our hearts go out to the families of those who have been senselessly killed or injured. Every New Zealander will feel the pain of the mothers and fathers of the young victims.

“I hope that out of this tragedy the world will join together in condemnation of terrorism, with a greater determination to both defeat it and address its causes.

"The long-running conflict in Chechnya has cost Chechens and Russians dearly. Our hope remains that the people of Chechnya and the government of Russia can work together through dialogue to find a sustainable and peaceful solution," Mr Goff said.

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