6 October 2004 -- The director of Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) has said the Al-Qaeda terrorist network is active in Russia's volatile North Caucasus.
Nikolai Patrushev told Russia's NTV television last night that Al-Qaeda is not a "myth" but a reality on Russian territory.
Patrushev said many Chechen separatist leaders had ties to Al-Qaeda. He named Khattab, Abu al-Walid, and Abu Khabs.
He also said the FSB had foiled 500 terrorist acts this year, but said special forces needed to work more effectively.
Patrushev's remarks come as a two-day international seminar on terrorism is set to wrap up today in the capital, Moscow. At the meeting, Russia unveiled plans to establish a new regional organization to fight money laundering and cut off funding to terrorist groups. It will include China, Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan.
(AFP)Factbox: Major Terrorist Incidents Tied To Russian-Chechen WarFor full coverage on the recent wave of terror attacks in Russia, see RFE/RL's webpage on "Terror In Russia".