Reductions in the military group in Chechnya will be resumed after of the leaders of bandit units are killed or arrested. Russian Defence Minister Sergei Ivanov spoke about it on Wednesday in Vladivostok (the administrative centre of the Maritime Territory) during his working tour of the country's Far Eastern regions.
Sergei Ivanov said that the reductions in the military group in Chechnya had been suspended after the terrorist act in Moscow and in connection with the fact that bandit units had started preparations for carrying out ominous plans in the mountains of the republic and in the adjacent areas.
According to the minister, intelligence information is coming that the leaders of bandit units have intensified their work for recruiting local young men whom they train to become suicide terrorists.
Talking with reporters, the Defence Minister underscored that the Russian Far East occupies an important geopolitical position in the country. For this reason, said he, the role of the Far Eastern Military District and of the Pacific Fleet must correspond to the importance of this region for Russia.
On Tuesday evening, Sergei Ivanov arrived at the main base of the Pacific Fleet, having completed his inspection of the Far Eastern Military District.
In Vladivostok, Sergei Ivanov held a conference with the heads of the local power structures and the federal bodies of power. This conference took place at the headquarters of the Pacific Fleet and was attended also by the governors of the territories and regions of the area. They discussed cooperation between military and civil structures in the fight against plunderers of biological resources and the checking of their smuggling abroad.
The preparation for and the holding of large-scale exercises in 2003, like those that took place this year on the Caspian Sea, will also be considered.