Chechen President Aslan Maskhadov yesterday denied that Chechen fighters would be sent to Kosovo. “Nobody has asked us to do so,” he said. (Russian agencies, July 1) Maskhadov was responding to reports in the Russian media that Chechen Foreign Minister Movladi Udugov had said Chechnya would be prepared to send peacekeeping troops to Kosovo. (Kommersant-daily, June 30; see also the Monitor, July 1) “If the leadership of Kosovo asks us to do so,” Maskhadov went on yesterday, “the decision will be taken by the Chechen president and nobody else.” Maskhadov said he sympathized with the struggle of the Kosovo Albanians for self-determination, saying it reminded him of Chechnya’s struggle for independence from Russia, but denied that there had been any contact between the leadership of the Kosovo Albanians and the Chechen government. (Russian agencies, July 1)
MASKHADOV PERHAPS USING STATE OF EMERGENCY TO NEUTRALIZE RADUEV.