MOSCOW, April 24 (RIA Novosti) – Chechen police have killed 13 and detained 41 militants in the first four months of the year, Chechnya Interior Minister Ruslan Alkhanov said on Sunday.
“Lately, the ranks of illegal armed formations in Chechnya have shrunk considerably and there are actually no people today to replenish these ranks. The remaining small groups of militants are unable to change anything or destabilize the situation in the republic,” the minister said.
The minister said that the Chechen police had also been able to persuade ten militants to lay down their arms.
Those militants who are still operating in the republic have no support from the local population, he said.
“I can say with confidence that the militants will either go on trial or be destroyed,” the minister said.
Sporadic terrorist attacks and militant clashes are common in Russia’s volatile North Caucasus republics, where Russia has held two wars against separatists in Chechnya, although the Kremlin has officially ended its military campaign against separatists and terrorists there.