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Chechen Rally Alleges Russian Rights Violations

(RFE/RL) 21 November 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Protesters rallied today in the Chechen capital against alleged human rights violations committed by Russian soldiers.

Activists from some 20 human-rights groups as well as students are participating in the protest in Grozny. They are demanding punishment for those responsible for the recent killing of three Chechen civilians and the shelling of a Chechen town, in which several civilians were injured.

The military says three Russian soldiers have been arrested on suspicion of killing three Chechens in the village of Staraya Sunzha just outside Grozny last week.

Military prosecutors opened an inquiry into the shelling of Starye Atagi earlier this month.

Protesters also demanded that armored vehicles be banned from the streets of Grozny and a number of checkpoints in the city removed.