Millitants still active in Chechnya

March 27, 2007 at 5:16 PM

MOSCOW, March 27 (UPI) -- A Russian military commander said up to 800 armed militants are still active in Chechnya years after an anti-terrorism campaign in the territory ended.

"Today some 70 to 90 armed groups, consisting of 600 to 800 militants, are still operating on the territory of Chechnya," Commander in Chief of the Interior Ministry Troops Col. Gen. Nikolai Rogozhkin said Tuesday, RIA Novosti reported.

Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov vowed recently that all illegal armed groups in his republic would be eliminated within two months.

"The counterterrorism operation in the region has been completed and today we are fighting criminal (not terrorist) elements in the Republic of Chechnya," said Kadyrov, who was elected president earlier this year.

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