Interviewed by Russian state television on January 10, Russian military chief of staff Anatoly Kvashnin affirmed that there are no longer any large “bandit groups” left in Chechnya and said that the federal forces are now being opposed only by individual groups of rebels who are no longer subordinate to either Aslan Maskhadov or Shamil Basaev. That meant, Kvashnin underlined, that there is presently no one in Chechnya with whom Russia could conduct negotiations. “Talks with whom?” Kvashnin asked. “Maskhadov? He’s in hiding and no one’s seen him for certain…. Talks with Basaev? Or Khattab? Who can we hold talks with?” (Russian Television, January 10; BBC Monitoring, January 11).