Basayev Press Conference: On to Jerusalem!
- Interesting report from Kavkaz-Tsentr:
FIRST MEETING AFTER BOTLIKH WITH JOURNALISTS
During his first meeting with journalists after Botlikh, Shamil Basayev said
that the Caucasus is on the threshhold of a "great war," which will continue
"until the complete liberation of all Muslims from the Volga to the Don."
He declared the final goal of the jihad to be "the establishment of Allah's
laws in Jerusalem."
"Muslims are awakening throughout the world," he said, "and the war will
continue for 20-25 years, even if I decline to take part, because my place
will be taken by thousands of others." Basayev maintained that the
operations undertaken by the federal forces to disarm the villages of
Karamakhi and Chabanmakhi in the Botlikh region <sic> of Dagestan further
the realization of his plan, code named "Imam Hamzat-Bek." Basayev
categorically denied that he had received 25 million dollars from Usama bin
Laden to carry out the Botlikh operation. "If I had that kind of money, I
would not have to fight," he pointed out. Basayev also was highly critical
of official Grozny's position. "First they try to accuse me of furthering
America's interests, then of furthering Russia's interests," he noted.. In
parting, Basayev said: "Even if the whole world goes up in blue flame, I
will not abandon jihad."