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MILITANT CLOSE TO MASKHADOV REPORTED HIS WHEREABOUTS TO LAW ENFORCERS

RIA Novosti

MOSCOW, March 9 (RIA Novosti) - Aslambek Aslakhanov, an adviser to the Russian president, believes Maskhadov's whereabouts had been reported to law enforcers by someone from among the militant leader's close entourage.

Mr. Aslakhanov said at a press conference at RIA Novosti on Wednesday that he was positive one of the arrested militants from among Maskhadov's entourage had reported his whereabouts.

However, Mr. Aslakhanov did not answer whether he would get 300 million rubles that had been promised for the information.

Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) had announced it would pay this sum for trustworthy information on Basayev and Maskhadov's whereabouts.

The press center of the Regional Operational Headquarters for the Counter-terrorist Operation in the North Caucasus told RIA Novosti that the money would be given even to militants.

Mr. Aslakhanov emphasized that the operation to destroy Maskhadov had been conducted by FSB forces alone.

"As far as I know, the operation was conducted by FSB forces alone. Others, the interior ministry and defense ministry, were auxiliary forces. Any declarations of part in the operation or stories about how it was conducted by law enforcement chiefs are attempts to get into the act and declare their involvement," said Mr. Aslakhanov.



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