Three Chechen commanders died in a firefight near the village of Assinovskoye June 19, Moscow’s Echo radio reported. Meanwhile, four Russian border guards and 20 Chechen fighters died in a fight near the Daghestan border. Both these fights took place as the cease-fire was going into effect. Meanwhile, local Cossack groups continued to organize, and to offer their services to local police forces as auxiliaries, Ostankino television reported June 18. In many cases, their offer has been accepted. A study of the Chechen conflict published in Birzhevskiye vedomosti (no. 24) suggests that damage in Chechnya has been far greater than Moscow has earlier acknowledged, in both physical and human terms. And again on June 19, there was no word about the fate of Fred Cuny, the American aid specialist who has been missing in the region since April 9.
Central Bank Cuts Rates to Slow Rise of Ruble.