Publication: North Caucasus Weekly Volume: 2 Issue: 21

During the course on of an interview given to the state television network ORT, leading Russian presidential spokesman Sergei Yastrzhembsky predicted that the conflict in Chechnya is likely to last for years. “It seems to me,” he remarked, “that we clearly exaggerate our uniqueness in relation to Chechnya, thinking that we stand alone on the earth with such a problem. The fact of the matter is that, according to the most modest estimates, there are thirty states in the world where they live with more or less actively developing regional conflicts–so-called low intensity conflicts–which they try to resolve over a very significant period of time. I believe that the conflict or situation on the territory [of Chechnya] belongs precisely to that category of conflict, one which will last for a long, long time, due to many reasons” (Vremena, ORT, May 20, posted on Rosinformtsentr, May 22).