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Scattered Gun Battles Continue in Grozny

Moscow, March 12 (RFE/RL) -- Scattered gun battles between Russian forces and separatist fighters continued in some neighborhoods of the Chechen capital Grozny today.

Russian federal forces reported nine soldiers and policemen killed in Grozny overnight. Eleven soldiers were reported injured.

Itar-Tass quoted Aleksandr Petrovsky, head of the Russian interior ministry's temporary administration in Chechnya, as saying there was strong information that Chechen military commander Aslan Maskhadov had indeed been wounded, as earlier reported. He said the interior ministry was looking into the report, which he said was backed up by facts and was "far from being just a rumor."

The Russian government on Sunday claimed victory over Chechen fighters in the battle for Grozny. Russian Interior Minister Anatoly Kulikov said some 1,000 Chechen fighters had taken part in last week's siege, with about 300 killed. He said 79 Russian servicemen had been killed and another 276 wounded during the fighting.