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Kavkaz News: Intense Fighting In The Mountains

The following transcript is taken from….http://www.chechnya.xnet.is/…the official news agency of the Chechen rebels.

TRANSCRIPT BEGINS

Mon, February 28th, 2000

Kavkaz Center reports:

According to the Chechen command bitter fighting continues near the village of Aslanbek Sheripov. For seven days the Russians, supported by MI-24 helicopters and armoured vehicles, have attacked the Chechen positions uninterruptedly. The village itself was bombed with so-called vacuum bombs [FAEs]. Several times the Russians managed to approach close to the village.
Units of the Chechen mujahideen repulsed all Russian attacks. At the south-western fringe of the village fierce face-to-face fighting took place. The mujahideen succeeded in knocking out three BMPs and in killing up to 50 Russians. The mujahideen suffered 4 casualties.
The fighting in this region is not letting up. After every unsuccessful assault the Russians attack the village with their air force and their artillery.

Using the mountain path along the route Kenkhi-Kiri-Dai, the Russians continue to move additional armoured troops into the fighting zone. Simultaneously, airborne operations of so-called elite forces of the Russian terrorists are being carried out on the commanding heights of Khorsenoy and in the direction of Khal-Keloy. The Chechen mujahideen, applying the tactics of mobile defence and unexpected attacks, successfully prevent the Russians from taking the military initiative. Due to their high casualties the Russians are forced to deploy more and more troops into the combat zone.
The Chechen vice-president Vakha Arsanov has made it known that the mujahideen on Sunday managed to shoot down a Russian transport helicopter of the type, which because of its size and shape is called "Flying Cow" by the Chechens. The helicopter went down from a height of 30-40 metres. According to Chechen fighters the helicopter was shot down moments before landing in order to drop troops--not less the 50 soldiers are said to have been in it.

The commanders of the Shatoy region, Khamzat Gilayev and Baudi Bakuyev, consider the military situation in this combat zone "difficult, but controllable and predictable". This they said to Chechen journalists after a commanders' meeting. According to Khamzat Gilayev, the main combat activity is taking place in the region of the villages of Khorsenoy, Khal-Keloy, Aslanbek Sheripov, Ushkaloy, Ulus-Kert, Zonakh, and Sharo-Argun. He says the Russians have suffered heavy casualties and lost much equipment. During recent days the mujahideen shot down 6 helicopters and knocked out 11 armoured vehicles. Up to 400 Russians were killed. Bakuyev says his fighters have carried out several special operations against units of the enemy near Khal-Keloy and Ushkaloy. The Russians were forced to stop their advance, to entrench themselves, and to wait for reinforcement. Abu Movsayev (Head of the Special Administration of the ChRI's State-committee of Defence) says that, according to Chechen information, all in all nine concentration camps for Chechens have been built up in the occupied territories of Chechnya and in Russia. The most important ones are situated in Chernokozovo, in Urus-Martan, in Doykur-Aul, and in the Staropromyslovsky District of the Chechen capital. Beyond the Chechen frontiers concentration camps exist in North Ossetia and in Stavropol Region. Special prisons have been established in Nalchik (Kabardino-Balkaria) and in Pyatigorsk.
The camps in Chernokozovo and in Mozdok (North Ossetia) are considered the most horrible ones. According to Movsayev biological and chemical experiments are being carried out on the detainees at the top secret camp in Mozdok.

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Fri, February 25, 2000

Kavkaz-Tsentr reports:

The fighting in the Argun Valley is intensifying.
Russian formations are trying to fortify themselves on the commanding heights in order to gain control of the roads from Shatoy to other villages of the region. The Russian air force is carrying out pattern bombings of the villages where, in addition to the local population, a great number of refugees is living. The Chechen mujahideen have occupied positions outside of the villages in order to lighten the situation of the civilians, but the Russian are continuing to murder women, children, and the elderly, making use of vacuum bombs, napalm, and operative-tactical rockets.
The most vehement fighting is taking place near Khal-Keloy, Ushkaloy, and Aslanbek Sheripov. The units of the mujahideen attacked successfully several times near Khorsenoy. There is no clear front-line: the mujahideen and the Russians, supported by aircrafts and helicopters, are engaging in combat activities at various places in the combat area. The Chechen fighters are attacking the Russians' flanks and from behind.
According to the Chechen command the Russians suffered heavy casualties. During the last 24 hours 90 Russians are said to have died whilst the Chechens have lost 3 mujahideen.

Since the beginning of the fighting with the Russian aggressors the 'Peacekeeping Army of the Majlis of the Muslims of Ichkeriya and Dagestan' has lost 345 mujahideen. This was made known by the Amir of the Majlis, Shamil Basayev. During the fights in Dagestan the Peacekeeping Army lost 112 men, and since the beginning of the Russian aggression against Chechnya another 233 fighters have fallen.
Among those killed in action are 64 Dagestanis, 27 Arabs, 29 Ingush, 20 Karachayans, 9 Circassians, 12 Turks, 8 Kabardinians, 13 Nogayans, 10 Russian Muslims, 13 Tatars, 25 men of other peoples of the Caucasus and the Volga region, and 115 Chechens.
According to Shamil Basayev, since the beginning of the fighting in Dagestan the 'Peacekeeping Army' has lost 7 commanders.

According to the head of the 'Special Administration of the State-committee of Defence of the ChRI', Abu Movsayev, the Chechen side has gathered information on the secret concentration camp for Chechens near Mozdok (North Ossetia). He says detainees of this camp are killed in biological and chemical experiments. A top-secret group of scientists from Moscow is said to work there, whose task is to develop bacteriological, biological, and chemical weapons. Not one single prisoner has left the concentration camp alive.
About 300 Chechens are said to be kept in the camp. The detainees are periodically poisoned with colourless and odourless aerosols in hermetically sealed chambers. The victims of these experiments are burnt in special mobile crematoriums.
According to Abu Movsayev his service has very reliable sources for this information.
Meanwhile, in the concentration camp of Chernokozovo, the Russian sadists continue to kill and to maim their Chechen victims.
The Chechen general public prosecutors' office has collected the testimonies of 13 eye-witnesses reporting the rape of corpses of Chechen detainees who were tortured to death.

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thu, February 24th, 2000

Kavkaz-Tsentr reports:

The fighting in the south of Chechnya continues. The Russians are moving in the direction of Shatoy. Russian bombers and helicopters are attacking the Chechen positions. 13 'Scud' and SS21 rockets were fired on Shatoy during the last 24 hours.
The Chechen mujahideen are counter-attacking the enemy; the most bitter fights are going on near the village of Khal-Keloy. Making use of the anti-aircraft systems 'Igla' and 'Strela' and high-calibre machine-guns, the mujahideen managed to bring down another two Russian helicopters. All in all, during the last 5 days the mujahideen shot down 5 helicopters.
According to the Chechen side 40 Spetsnaz-terrorists were killed near Khal-Keloy.

In Islamabad (Pakistan) a scientific conference was held to commemorate the 56th anniversary of the deportation of the Chechens and other Muslim peoples of the North Caucasus. It was organized by the Islamic organization "Djamaat ul-Islami" and other Islamic organizations. Russia was blamed for its past and present crimes, and the Pakistani government was called upon to recognize the independence of Chechnya.
The Chechen ex-president Zelimkhan Yandarbiyev took part in the conference as a guest of honour. This is will be the last item of his diplomatic mission to Pakistan.

For two days the Kremlin's propagandists have been reporting "fighting near the village of Omi-Chu" near the frontier to Georgia--an example of their method of virtual warfare. This village does not exist, and there have been no fights near the Georgian frontier.
The Chechen side considers the invention of this village to be related to the Russians' need to present a threat from beyond the Georgian frontier to their public.

Hundreds of refugees from Dzhokhar and former detainees of Russian concentration camps have reported atrocities carried out by the Russians there. Inhabitants of Dzhokhar report mass executions in the Chechen capital. Lida Belkharoyeva from Ingushetia, who wanted to get her ill sister out of Dzhokhar, says she witnessed the shooting of about one hundred inhabitants of the suburb of Maas (former Kalinina). Most of the victims were women and the elderly or ill Chechens whom she knew personally. Lida Belkharoyeva herself hid in a cellar of a bombed out house. Her sister was killed by Russian marauders.
People having escaped from Chernokozovo continue to report about the satanic torture and the raping in this concentration camp. According to the latest reports about 2,000 people are imprisoned in Chernokozovo. In recent times rumours are circulating concerning another concentration camp near Mozdok (North Ossetia).

In Ingushetia mass demonstrations of Chechen refugees against the Russian occupation of Chechnya took place. The demonstrators demanded an end to the Russian war crimes in Chechnya, the punishment of the organizers of the aggression against the independent Chechen state, and the withdrawal of the Russians from Chechnya.

-----------------------------------

February 23rd

Kavkaz-Tsentr reports:

February 23rd in Chechnya is the 'Day of the Resurrection of the Nation'. 56 years ago the Stalinist regime deported the Chechen people and other Muslim peoples of the Caucasus and of the Crimea to Siberia and to Kazakhstan. About two-thirds of the Chechen nation perished because of the cold, hunger, and mass punishment. During the military operations to deport the Chechens in the village of Khaybakh 700 women, children, and elderly people were burnt alive. On the shores of Lake Galanchozh about 6,000 Chechens were shot or drowned, 90% of them women, children, and ill elderly people.
For 13 years the Chechen people lived in banishment. During this time the Kremlin regime tried to extinguish the Chechen nation by provoking mass riots and punishments. The most vehement uprising took place in 1950 in Leninagorsk (Kazakhstan), where unarmed Chechens unexpectedly attacked thousands of Russian soldiers who were armed to the teeth and belonged to the regular army or to NKVD units. The fighting in Leninagorsk lasted for more than two months. In the remembrance of the Chechen people it will always be an example for Chechen heroism. During this time, when the occupied Chechen territory was settled with criminals from all over Russia, the resistance in Chechnya was lead by the legendary partisan Khasukha Magomedov. He fought against the communist Russian occupiers for 40 years, from 1937 to 1976. In 1976 the 78-years-old Khasukha died gun in hand, fighting against special units of the KGB in the Shatoy District.
In the early days of the Stalinist Empire, in the late thirties and early forties, some kind of Chechen statehood had been established under the command of Khasan Israpilov. His units fought against the Russian communist gangs for seven years.
In 1991 Chechenya declared its independence once again under the leadership of President Dzhokhar Dudayev. In 1993 Dudayev declared February 23rd a national holiday, the 'Day of the Resurrection of the Nation'. Delivering a speech at the opening ceremony of the Deportation memorial complex in Grozny/Dzhokhar-Gala, Dudayev said that the Chechens are not complaining about their fate, but are going to continue their fight for freedom and independence forever.

The Chechen ex-president Zelimkhan Yandarbiyev is still in Pakistan. There was news that the Pakistani government was going to expel him due to diplomatic pressure, but according to the Pakistani foreign minister this is not true.
Islamic organizations in Pakistan, especially the 'Djamaat ul-Islami', are calling upon the Pakistani government to adopt more determined measures against Russia.

The fighting in the mountains has become fiercer. Another three helicopters were shot down.
The Russians are moving towards the villages of Sharo-Argun, Khorsenoy, Ushkaloy, Aslambek Sheripov, and Ulus-Kert. The Chechen mujahideen are defending their positions and are counter-attacking. Near the village of Aslambek Sheripov the mujahideen shot down a helicopter with paratroopers. The helicopter went down and burned. Two MI-42 helicopters were shot down near Khal-Kiloy.
At the entrance to the Argun Valley the mujahideen attacked near Ulus-Kert. 4 armoured vehicles were destroyed, and one "Grad" rocket launcher was captured. About 70 Russians were killed. The Chechens lost two mujahideen. Face-to-face fighting is going on near Ushkaloy and Khorsenoy. The Russians are making use of aircraft and helicopters. Bitter fighting is reported from the region of Sharo-Argun.

Shamil Basayev presided over a meeting of commanders of the Dagestani mujahideen in Chechnya. Basayev told Kavkaz-Tsentr's correspondent that about 1,000 mujahideen from Dagestan are fighting in the Islamic Peacekeeping Force in Chechnya.
Basayev repudiated Russian reports that he had left Chechnya for convalescence. "I'm healthy enough to fight against the disgusting, godless, and vile aggressors. They are fighting the devil's fight, and we finally have to overcome these Satanists," says Shamil Basayev.

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Tue, February 22, 2000

Kavkaz-Tsentr reports:

According to the Chechen command combat activities are taking place in the south of Chechnya. The Russians continue their efforts to occupy the main commanding heights in the Sharoy District. The Chechen units, applying the tactics of mobile defence, are hindering the aggressor's advance.
The Chechen side this morning has made it known that one of the forward units of the Russians has moved towards Sharo-Argun.
The villages is being bombed by the Russian air force. The mujahideen have occupied positions outside Sharo-Argun in order not to endanger the civilians in the village (among them a lot of refugees). Despite this, the Russians are carrying out attacks on it, making use of vacuum bombs and tactical rockets. Many civilian inhabitants of Sharo-Argun have been killed.

The Chechen vice-president Vakha Arsanov has denied the Kremlin's reports that the Chechens were preparing activities related to the eve of February 23rd.
He says that the activities of the Chechen army don't depend on any remembrance day or anniversary. The mujahideen are fulfilling their duty to God and to their homeland. The aggressors are being defeated by the mujahideen every day, not only on holidays, says Vakha Arsanov.
February 23th is the anniversary of the Stalinist deportation of the Chechen people to Central Asia and was declared a national holiday by Chechnya's first president Dzhokhar Dudayev. It is called the "Day of the Resurrection of the Nation" in order to indicate that the Chechens are not willing to give pleasure to their enemies' hearts by weeping and mourning about past suffering.

Though the Chechen mujahideen left the village of Duba-Yurt a few days ago the Russians are continuing to destroy the village with artillery and aviation. It is being attacked with heavy howitzers and bombers. Formations of the Russians are imitating fighting by assaulting the empty heights around the village.
The Chechen units, having shortened the front-line, are defending the depths of the Argun Valley. Several units of the mujahideen are carrying out scouting operations and raids to destroy advance units of the enemy: near Itum-Kale a unit of the mujahideen attacked a Russian unit unexpectedly, killing about 20 soldiers. Two mortars and 2 automatic grenade launchers AGS were taken as booty.
According to the Chechen side the Russians are concentrating their forces around the entrance of the Argun Valley and are continuing to land troops in the area around Itum-Kale, Khorsenoy, and Sharo-Argun.

TRANSCRIPT ENDS

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