Moscow, 11 June 1997 (RFE/RL) - Chechen security officials said today that two more journalists have been kidnapped in the breakaway Russian republic.
ITAR-TASS identified the two as Ilyas Bogatirev, a correspondent for ORT's program "Vzglyad" (View) and his cameraman, Vladislav Chernyaev. The agency said the two were abducted this afternoon in the center of the Chechen capital, Grozny.
The new abductions bring the number of journalists being held in Chechnya to five. Three reporters for the Russian NTV network were kidnapped a month ago and are still missing.
Chechen President Aslan Maskhadov has made the release of hostages one of his top priorities. Four Russian journalists were freed last Friday after more than three months in captivity.