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DATE=11/2/1999 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=U-N-H-C-R / CHECHNYA (L ONLY) NUMBER=2-255733 BYLINE=LISA SCHLEIN DATELINE=GENEVA CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: The United Nations refugee agency, U-N-H-C-R, is voicing continued concern about the thousands of people stranded along the border between Chechnya and Ingushetia (in Southern Russia). Lisa Schlein in Geneva reports the agency says Russian authorities are allowing only a trickle of refugees fleeing the fighting in Chechnya to cross the border. TEXT: The U-N refugee agency says Russian authorities are opening the border during the day between Chechnya and Ingushetia. But, it says the alarmingly slow pace at which the refugees are allowed to cross means the border for most people is effectively closed. U-N-H-C-R spokesman Kris Janowski says only a few dozen Chechens were allowed to cross into Ingushetia during the first hour on Tuesday. /// JANOWSKI ACT ONE /// People are crossing in both directions to Chechnya. Some are going back to Chechnya to pick up their relatives they had left behind and bring them out of Chechnya. And, some are leaving Chechnya for Ingushetia. /// END ACT /// Mr. Janowski says there are reports that an estimated five-thousand people are massing on the Ingushetia side of the border and another 10-thousand are on the Chechen side waiting to cross. He says that on Monday, only 164 people in Chechnya were allowed to pass into Ingushetia. And, he says only about 400 people were let back into Chechnya to try to get their relatives. /// JANOWSKI ACT TWO /// For comparison, before the clampdown at the border, the rate of crossing was between five- thousand and seven-thousand a day. So this is the real capacity of the border. At the moment, there are elaborate checks both by the Russian federal forces and the Ingush Interior Ministry which is slowing down. We are also concerned about the continued civilian casualties in Chechnya of the Russian military operation there. /// END ACT /// Mr. Janowski says the United Nations is concerned by a reported rocket attack on a convoy of people fleeing Chechnya last Friday. Two Red Cross workers were killed in that attack. The U-N refugee agency estimates about 180-thousand Chechens have fled to Ingushetia. The agency says a fifth convoy of relief supplies reached Ingushetia's capital, Nazran, on Tuesday after an overnight journey from Stavropol. The agency says a great deal more food, medical supplies, and shelter assistance will have to be sent to Ingushetia to help the Chechen refugees survive the winter. (Signed) NEB/LS/JWH/JO 02-Nov-1999 09:15 AM EDT (02-Nov-1999 1415 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .





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