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DATE=11/9/1999 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=RUSSIA / CHECHNYA (L-UPDATE) NUMBER=2-255982 BYLINE=EVE CONANT DATELINE=MOSCOW CONTENT= VOICED AT: 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 States. 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) NEB/EC/JWH/RAE 09-Nov-1999 12:36 PM EDT (09-Nov-1999 1736 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .





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