Following threatsby the Russian government and Boris Yeltsin to disarm the Chechensby force if the Chechens did not start to hand over their weapons,several Chechen units did just that August 16, Russian radio reported.Chechen commander Arslan Maskhadov, who had earlier criticizedthe Russian threats, said he hoped that both the turning in ofweapons and Russian withdrawal from parts of Chechnya would nowproceed as planned. And Chechen negotiators indicated that theywere now willing to return to the peace talks. But the situationin Chechnya remained tense: at least eight Russian servicemenwere wounded in attacks August 16. And Kommersant-Daily reportedAugust 15 that few North Caucasians expected the Chechens to complyfully with the order to turn in their weapons: "No man inhis right mind would voluntarily turn in his weapon in the Caucasus,"one local resident told the paper. Meanwhile, pro-Moscow Chechensissued a demand that elections in that republic coincide withthe all-Russian parliamentary vote, Russian radio said August17. And rumors continued that Russian security council secretaryOleg Lobov would be named the presidential representative in Chechnya,Moscow’s Echo Radio reported.
Moscow Welcomes US Proposals on Yugoslavia.