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Chechnya: Russian Forces Watching Daghestani Border

Moscow, 11 August 2000 (RFE/RL) - Russian forces have stepped up security on the Daghestani-Chechen border after reports that groups of Chechen separatists may be preparing to cross into Daghestan. Officials quoted by ITAR-TASS say some 80 separatist groups, each with around six fighters, have been sighted in the border region. There was fighting yesterday in Ingushetia near the border with Chechnya. The office of Sergei Yastrzhembsky, the Kremlin's spokesman on Chechnya, says there were Russian casualties in the clash near the village of Nizhni Alkun, but did not give details. Six Chechen separatists were reported killed in the fighting.

Meanwhile, the central command of Russian forces in Chechnya today accused Azerbaijan of providing medical treatment for Chechen rebels. There has been no official reaction from Baku.