Major General Yury Rozhin, head of the FSB’s directorate for Chechnya, told Dmitry Semenov of the Kremlin-controlled website Strana.ru in an interview published on August 12 that although he considers the situation in Chechnya to be “stable,” he nevertheless expects that it will continue to be “tense” until Russia’s presidential election in April of 2004.
Rozhin said that only about seventy rebel guerrillas had surrendered in response to this year’s amnesty. That is significantly less than the 112 claimed by the Kadyrov administration in an August 12 report by Izvestia. Rozhin admitted that “we had expected somewhat more,” and hinted strongly that the reason for the disappointing result was that “at present many former guerrillas are finding positions for themselves in Akhmad Kadyrov’s security service, under Kadyrov’s guarantee.” He said that the FSB has intelligence information indicating continued links between members of Kadyrov’s police and guerrilla bands. Those links have sometimes enabled the guerrillas to acquire phony passports and other documents.