TITLE=RUSSIA / CHECHNYA (L-UPDATE)
INTRO: Russia is taking steps to restrict contact
between its volatile Northern Caucasus region and the
outside world. Moscow Correspondent Eve Conant
reports Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has
signed a government resolution cutting off air travel
between southern Russia and Muslim countries.
TEXT: Russia has banned flights between its southern
regions bordering Chechnya and several Muslim
countries in what appears to a bid to stop foreign
mercenaries from joining Chechen forces.
The resolution says temporary measures will be taken
to stop air travel with countries in the Caucasus and
the Middle East, including Georgia, Azerbaijan, Saudi
Arabia, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.
The resolution also states that Russia's southern
border with Georgia and Azerbaijan will be closed to
all foreigners except citizens of 12 former Soviet
republics that make up the Commonwealth of Independent
Earlier, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said Russia
will not stop its attacks on Chechnya, despite
international pressure to ease the campaign.
/// PUTIN ACT - IN RUSSIAN - FADE UNDER ///
He says Russia has no choice. It cannot just send one
special unit or one policeman with a gun. He says --
we are dealing with foreign-trained militant groups
that are a real danger.
Russian warplanes made new attacks (Tuesday) against
Chechnya, targeting what military leaders say is a
rebel stronghold in the southwestern city of Urus-
Martan. Russian military sources say warplanes
destroyed an air-defense installation and 10-vehicles
used by Chechen militants.
Russian forces also bombed what they say are militant
camps in the region's southern mountains. There has
been no word on Chechen military activity.
Communications with the breakaway region were cut off
shortly after the war began.
The U-N Refugee Agency says Chechen civilians are
fleeing into neighboring Ingushetia at a rate of four-
thousand people each day. (SIGNED)
09-Nov-1999 12:36 PM EDT (09-Nov-1999 1736 UTC)
Source: Voice of America
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