NEW YORK (AP) _ CNN had some second thoughts about airing graphic wartime video footage.

The news network telecast a report Tuesday that showed a captured Russian soldier being shot in the head, then edited it for subsequent viewings to stop the action before the trigger is pulled.

The video, apparently taken by fighters in the breakaway republic of Chechnya three years ago, was contained in a report about how the footage is being used to muster Russian political support for the conflict.

Two people called to complain to CNN after the report was initially aired shortly after noon, spokesman Earl Casey said.

By that time, the decision had already been made to edit the video, Casey said. It was shown again at 2:45 p.m. and was also being aired on CNN Headline News and on CNN's international stations.

CNN's Jeanne Meserve warned viewers before the report that it contains ``some very violent images that you may find disturbing.'' Reporter Mike Hanna said the video, obtained by Russian security, was apparently shown to Russian politicians and, to some extent, on Russian television.

During its initial CNN airing, it depicted a man with a gun to his head, but the image stopped before he was shot. A gun was fired against a second man, his fatal injuries obscured by a puff of smoke and the video's grainy quality.

Another snippet of film shows a man begging for his life. He is then blindfolded and his head placed on a tree stump. The video shows an executioner raising an ax above the man's head and swinging it, with the image stopping before the ax hits its mark.

CNN has run graphic footage during past reports on conflicts, Casey said. During the Kosovo war, the network showed a series of bloody corpses.

Asked why the network did not edit out the depiction of a man being shot before the video was shown the first time, Casey said it was routine in news organizations to make changes on deadline. He didn't say who ordered the change.