Publication: North Caucasus Weekly Volume: 2 Issue: 32

According to a September 7 report by the news agency Agence France Presse, the mission of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) based in Chechnya has been hindered by the Russian authorities in carrying out its activities in the time since that mission officially opened on June 15. The mission’s head, Romanian diplomat Alexandru Cornea, observed that the Russian authorities are holding up registering and delivering the armored vehicles, pledged by the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs, which the five participating members of the OSCE and their military escort need to travel about in the republic. Despite this lack of appropriate transport, Cornea said, the mission has been able to undertake small humanitarian projects to help victims of the conflict and has “also received 200 complaints of human rights violations-kidnappings, missing persons, robberies and extortions.” The OSCE mission, Cornea noted, has also been able to visit two villages located outside of its base in Znamenskoe and was able on one single occasion to travel to the Chechen capital.