TITLE=RUSSIA / CHECHNYA (S)
INTRO: Martial law is in effect in Chechnya as
Russian troops consolidate their newly won control
over the northern third of the breakaway region.
Moscow Correspondent Peter Heinlein reports Chechens
are fleeing by the thousands as Russian forces
TEXT: Seven-thousand refugees poured out of Chechnya
in the past 24-hours to the relative safety of
neighboring Ingushetia, where more than 120-thousand
others are already camped.
Ingush President, Ruslan Aushev, issued another appeal
for international help in avoiding a humanitarian
crisis. But Russian Deputy Prime Minister Valentina
Matviyenko flew to the region, saying Moscow can take
care of the refugees itself.
Inside Chechnya, President Aslan Maskhadov declared
martial law as Russian troops captured a town 25-
kilometers from the capital, Grozny.
Military strategists indicate troops may now halt
their advance and fortify positions in the northern
one-third of the republic they have captured. The
plan is to create a secure zone that would be a
showcase of prosperity, while punishing the south with
a tight military and economic blockade. (SIGNED)
06-Oct-1999 08:02 AM EDT (06-Oct-1999 1202 UTC)
Source: Voice of America
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