Russian President Vladimir Putin has voiced his negative attitude towards forcing refugees to return to Chechnya. On Thursday, the Russian leader met Viktor Kazantsev, the Presidential Plenipotentiary in the Southern Federal District, in the presidential summer residence outside the Sochi resort on the Black Sea coast.
The Plenipotentiary reported to the President about the progress of restoration works in the North Caucasus ravaged by a flood this June, as well as about the situation surrounding Chechen refugees. According to Kazantsev, from 50 to 70 refugees return to Chechnya every day.
"People ought to return to their homes not under administrative pressure, but thanks to conditions allowing them to deliberately do so," Vladimir Putin stressed.
Presidential candidate Ksenia Sobchak, who was accredited for the press conference by Vladimir Putin from Dozhd (Rain) television channel, asked Putin about competition at the coming election
On December 14, President Putin holds his annual Q&A session with Russian and foreign journalists. This conference is considered to be the beginning of his presidential campaign