Chechen resistance fighters intensify onslaughts against federal army

Ruslan Isayev, North Caucasus -- Chechen rebels recently began to intensify onslaughts against federal soldiers, which many observers believe will now increase daily.

A battle between Chechen resistance fighters and Russian soldiers took place on Thursday, near the Zakan-Yurt village in the Achkhoi-Martanovsky district. According to the Chechen Interior Ministry, two rebels were killed during the hour-long gunfire.

However, the core part of the rebel group, consisting of about 10 men, managed to escape the barrage and hide in the forest. Military helicopters immediately set off in hot pursuit but were unable to find them. No information has been released concerning the losses of Russian soldiers.

The same day, in the Shalinsky district, rebels waged an assault on the staff of the military command post located in a state-controlled cooperative near the village of Avtury. Chechen police reported there were two dead and four soldiers wounded during the course of the fighting.

It was reported that, last week, in the Shatoysky district, a unit of rebels under the command of Ruslan Gelayev, got into armed conflict with Russian soldiers. The source confirms 24 Russians were killed and 10 captured. Prague Watchdog's correspondent was unable to get any confirmation or denial from the Russian authorities in Chechnya.


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