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Russian-Chechen War: Media Coverage #008 [17 DEC 2000]

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  • Ralph Davis
    Russian-Chechen War: Media Coverage #008 [17 DEC 2000] [Open-source resources compiled by Ralph Davis for the recipient s personal use.] 1. Chechen rebel
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 8, 2001
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      Russian-Chechen War: Media Coverage #008 [17 DEC 2000]
      [Open-source resources compiled by Ralph Davis for the
      recipient's personal use.]

      1.   Chechen rebel chief Maskhadov said hurt, bodyguards killed in November
      shoot-out
      2.   Riaz Basra on US list of 'terrorists'
      3.   Chechnya's provisional leader lacks influence - presidential aide
      4.   Russian security officer reports rift between Chechen rebels and
      mercenaries
      5.   Chechen rebels warn people against working in oil industry
      6.   Chechnya's pro-Moscow leader urges his people to opt for peace
      7.   Chechnya: Pro-Moscow head slams "perfidious" ex-president, calls for
      peace
      8.   Prominent pro-Moscow Chechen confirms rebel leader Maskhadov wounded
      9.   Pro-Chechen site says seven Russian vehicles destroyed daily during
      Ramadan

      ***************

      1.   Chechen rebel chief Maskhadov said hurt, bodyguards killed in November
      shoot-out
      BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Dec 16, 2000

      Text of report in English by Russian news agency ITAR-TASS

      Groznyy, 16 December: Chechen law-enforcement officials have disclosed the
      details of the incident on 7 November in which Chechen President Aslan
      Maskhadov was injured.

      Maskhadov was riding in a white Zhiguli car and suddenly ran into a Ural
      truck belonging to the federal troops near the settlement of Alleroy, not
      far from the Dagestani border.

      The truck driver found it suspicious that the Zhiguli had stopped and begun
      to make a U-turn. When it ignored the servicemen's order to stop, one of
      them fired a machine gun at the car. It turned out from a radio intercept
      that Maskhadov had been wounded in the neck.

      Presidential aide Sergey Yastrzhembskiy confirmed in an interview with
      ITAR-TASS on 14 December that the Chechen separatist leader was injured on 7
      November near Alleroy. Maskhadov's driver and two of his bodyguards were
      killed, but Maskhadov managed to escape.

      Alleroy is about 55 kilometres east of Groznyy, not far from the
      administrative border with Dagestan. This is Maskhadov's home base.

      Source: ITAR-TASS news agency, Moscow, in English 1945 gmt 16 Dec 00

      *****************
      2.   Riaz Basra on US list of 'terrorists'
      By Our Staff Correspondent
      DAWN (17 December 2000)

      WASHINGTON, Dec 16 - The name of Riaz Basra, convicted of assassinating the
      director-general of the Iranian Cultural Centre in Lahore on Dec 19, 1990,
      figures on a US list of "terrorists" that "live in or have lived in, have
      trained in, are headquartered in or financed from Afghanistan".

      Basra, who escaped from police custody and has been wanted by Pakistani
      authorities, is described in the US list as the "would be assassin" of
      deposed prime minister Nawaz Sharif.

      On Jan 3, 1999, a bridge on the Lahore-Raiwind road, close to Mr Sharif's
      palatial rural retreat, was blown up shortly before the then prime minister
      was due to pass that way. Basra was alleged to be involved in the incident.

      Sightings of the fugitive have been reported from various places in Pakistan
      in the past four or five years, and Pakistani newspapers have often received
      faxes purportedly sent by him claiming responsibility for some sectarian
      attacks. On April 5, 1999, police in Sargodha had claimed that he was killed
      in an "encounter." But his mother's testimony and forensic tests had
      disproved the police claim.

      Basra's name is on a list contained in testimony before a sub-committee of
      the House of Representatives' judiciary committee by the State Department's
      counter-terrorism chief, Michael Sheehan.

      Others on the list include: Taha Musa, of the Egyptian Al Gamaat al Islamiya
      organization; Ibn al Khatib, field commander in Chechnya; Shami Basayav,
      also a Chechnya field commander; and several persons indicted in the 1998 US
      embassy bombings in East Africa.

      State Department officials stress that it is not just that there are people
      in hiding in Afghanistan who are wanted only by the US. There are people
      there, they say, who are sought by Pakistan and other countries.

      Pakistan has announced a head money of Rs5 million for Basra, who is
      believed to have fought in Afghanistan in the '80s. Later he was active in
      the Sipah-i-Sahaba and then headed the militant Lashkar-i-Jhangvi group.

      ***************
      3.   Chechnya's provisional leader lacks influence - presidential aide
      BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Dec 17, 2000

      Text of report in English by Russian news agency ITAR-TASS

      Moscow, 17 December: The administration of Akhmad Kadyrov and Kadyrov
      himself, "alas, do not have the influence hoped for by the federal
      authorities and, I think, Kadyrov too," presidential aide Sergey
      Yastrzhembskiy said in the Russia TV channel Zerkalo programme on Sunday [17
      December].

      "The problem is that there is not a single man amongst leaders of Chechen
      society to say that he enjoys support of an absolute or even comparative
      majority in the Chechen republic," Yastrzhembskiy remarked. "That is a real
      problem encountered by the federal centre... [agency ellipsis] Ethnic
      Chechens, intellectuals, the Chechen elite are split."

      Yet "the stake of the federal centre is right, that is to unite notables, as
      many people who can work together as possible," the aide remarked.

      Source: ITAR-TASS news agency, Moscow, in English 1701 gmt 17 Dec 00

      ****************
      4.   Russian security officer reports rift between Chechen rebels and
      mercenaries
      BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Dec 17, 2000

      Text of report in English by Russian news agency Interfax

      Moscow, Gudermes, 17 December: Rifts are growing in Chechnya between Chechen
      rebels and foreign mercenaries, particularly Arab mercenaries, a source in
      the Russian special services has told Interfax.

      "Most of the Chechen [rebels] view Arabs as a source of financing for their
      resistance. Therefore, the Arab mercenaries have been allotted secondary
      roles," the source said.

      The money coming in to support the rebel formations "is being used in the
      interests of the Chechen bandits, the Arab volunteers' interests being
      disregarded", he said, adding that the Chechen separatists have received a
      lion's share of the money that has arrived through the Al-Kharamein fund [as
      received].

      The conflict has been caused by the fact that all settlements with the
      bandits are being handled by the so-called Majlis-Shura led by Shamil
      Basayev, the source said, noting that the Arab volunteers led by Khattab are
      against this.

      Given this, Islamic funds have made the decision to finance the mercenaries
      "directly through concrete field commanders", he said.

      Source: Interfax news agency, Moscow, in English 0957 gmt 17 Dec 00

      *******************
      5.   Chechen rebels warn people against working in oil industry
      BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Dec 17, 2000

      Text of report in English by Russian news agency Interfax

      Groznyy, 17 December: The Chechen separatist Shari'ah court, the Supreme
      Shura, has declared war on the Chechen Republic's oil industry. An order
      that impels Chechens "to blast and set on fire all trains carrying oil and
      petroleum products" has recently been published in the illegal newspaper
      `The Voice of Jihad'. Chechens have also been told "to destroy railways and
      bridges through which fuel is transported."

      Oil industry workers have been warned that they will be rigorously punished
      if they do not quit their jobs voluntarily. The Shura has also impelled
      Chechens "to burn and eliminate tank trucks being used by the occupation
      forces." This order was signed by field commander Shamil Basayev.

      The computer-printed newspaper is being circulated on markets and in other
      public places.

      The leader of the Chechen administration, Akhmad Kadyrov, told journalists
      that "these actions were aimed against the entire population of Chechnya who
      were looking forward to reviving the oil industry and who had not been
      offered anything by [rebel leader - agency add] [Aslan] Maskhadov." The
      newly-established company, Grozneftegas, at the initial stage of work alone,
      could create over 1,000 jobs, Kadyrov said.

      It is not clear whether the order reflects Maskhadov's or only the author's
      position.

      Source: Interfax news agency, Moscow, in English 0759 gmt 17 Dec 00

      *****************
      6.   Chechnya's pro-Moscow leader urges his people to opt for peace
      BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Dec 17, 2000

      Text of report by Radio Russia on 17 December

      The people of Chechnya need to make up their minds whether they are for
      peace or for continuing the war. As long as the Chechen people do not make
      their choice, the war will continue. Akhmad Kadyrov, the head of the
      administration of Chechnya, said this in a TV address yesterday evening. If
      you want peace, creation and a future for your children, back Kadyrov, if
      you are for blood[shed], tears and suffering, follow Maskhadov, he said.

      Kadyrov also demanded that the heads of administrations of villages and
      Districts stop pursuing a policy of double standards, noting that there are
      shortcomings and oversights in their work and at times even resistance to
      the republican authorities. In this connection he said that in the near
      future he would implement substantial personnel changes in rural and
      District power structures.

      Source: Radio Russia, Moscow, in Russian 0800 gmt 17 Dec 00

      *****************
      7.   Chechnya: Pro-Moscow head slams "perfidious" ex-president, calls for
      peace
      BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Dec 16, 2000

      Text of report in English by Russian news agency Interfax

      Groznyy, 16 December: Chechnya's Moscow-appointed governor Akhmad Kadyrov
      has blamed the Chechen conflict which broke out in the autumn of 1999 on
      separatist leader Aslan Maskhadov.

      Maskhadov "perfidiously violated the treaty on peace and principles for
      mutual relations" with Russia signed in 1997, Kadyrov said in a Chechen TV
      programme on Saturday [16 December].

      Maskhadov "deliberately organized the attacks by armed groups on Dagestan,
      whereby he provoked retaliatory action on the part of the Russian
      leadership".

      Kadyrov insists that Maskhadov should stop fighting and leave Chechnya.
      Other separatist leaders have left the region, Kadyrov said.

      He also urged Chechnya's population to oppose the separatist forces.

      "Individual heads of administration at various levels are showing duality in
      their work and in assessing events that are happening," he said. He warned
      them of imminent dismissal.

      He also complained that Muslim spiritual leaders had not been contributing
      to stability through their sermons.

      He said the separatists were circulating leaflets and using radio and
      television, preaching a holy war and calling for punishment for those
      collaborating with the Russians.

      He again urged young separatist fighters immediately to lay down their arms
      and return to civilian life.

      "There is nothing but annihilation in store for those who do not listen to
      this voice," he said.

      Source: Interfax news agency, Moscow, in English 1823 gmt 16 Dec 00

      *****************
      8.   Prominent pro-Moscow Chechen confirms rebel leader Maskhadov wounded
      BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Dec 16, 2000

      Text of report by Radio Russia on 16 December

      Well-known representative of the Chechen diaspora, businessman Malik
      Saydullayev [leader of the pro-Russian Chechen state council] has confirmed
      reports by Russian officials that [rebel leader] Aslan Maskhadov was wounded
      in November. According to some reports, he is in hiding in the hills near
      Nozhay-Yurt. Saydullayev says he is very sceptical of claims that Maskhadov
      is in charge of detachments of fighters. Such talk is a load of rubbish - he
      has long been in charge of nothing and nobody, the well-known businessman
      says confidently.

      He also says that field commander and kidnapper Arbi Barayev is in Groznyy.
      On a number of occasions he has been seen strolling around town in the
      company of bodyguards. People know the cafe he likes to call at, Saydullayev
      said.

      Source: Radio Russia, Moscow, in Russian 0900 gmt 16 Dec 00

      *****************
      9.   Pro-Chechen site says seven Russian vehicles destroyed daily during
      Ramadan
      BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Dec 18, 2000

      16 December: The mojahedin have kept to their promise to increase their
      operations during the month of Ramadan. As a result, Russian forces have
      suffered major losses recently, especially in Groznyy. An average of seven
      vehicles laden with ammunition and/or soldiers have been destroyed on a
      daily basis since the month started. Most of these vehicles are either
      soldier transport vehicles (Kamaz, KAZ66, Ural) or armoured vehicles (BMP
      and BTR) [infantry fighting vehicle and armoured personnel carrier].

      The mojahedin carry out most of these attacks using unexploded Russian
      missiles, which they have modified, either firing them or using them as
      landmines. They have also carried out many lightning executions in the
      streets and markets using nothing more than their pistols. The targets of
      these executions have been Russian officers and soldiers, as well as Chechen
      traitors who support and gather intelligence for the enemy.

      [Subhead] Russia lies to save face

      Russia continues to lie and fabricate stories about the Chechen war, in
      another effort to save face and avoid international humiliation. The latest
      such tale, recently announced in the Russian media and later repeated by the
      western media, claims that Russian forces have killed scores of mojahedin in
      various locations within Chechnya. The reports claim that 15 mojahedin were
      killed in Mesker-Yurt, and another four in Serzhen-Yurt.

      The mojahedin military command council has flatly denied these reports,
      pointing out that mojahedin formations do not even exist in these two
      locations. And as for individuals, they say, no-one has been injured, let
      alone killed. A council spokesman confirmed that the reports are merely new
      lies from the Russian government, which is trying to boost the destroyed
      morale of its troops and fool the world too.

      [Passage omitted: details of fighting which have already been reported.]

      Source: Jihad in Chechnya web site, London, in English 18 Dec 00
       
      ***************
      [END]

      [DISCLAIMER: The selection of articles posted in this e-newsletter does not
      necessary reflect the views nor endorsement of the compiler. They are
      submitted in the interest of public discourse. Please submit all
      inquiries/questions to Ralph Davis at
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