The State Duma on Friday approved a government amnesty plan intended to persuade militants in Chechnya and surrounding regions of the North Caucasus to disarm and surrender to authorities.
Deputies quickly passed the legislation, proposed by President Vladimir Putin, in a 350-80 vote, with one abstention. The amnesty, part of an effort to end more than a decade of separatist resistance following the deaths of rebel leaders this summer, would remain in effect until Jan. 15.
The amnesty would also apply to servicemen suspected of committing crimes while serving in Chechnya and the North Caucasus.
Pavel Krashennikov, head of the Duma's Legislation Committee, denied speculation that the amnesty might apply to servicemen convicted or indicted of serious crimes, such as the murder of civilians, Interfax reported Saturday.
Monday, September 25, 2006
Chechen Amnesty Plan Approved
From The Moscow Times: