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Russia: Four Soldiers Kidnapped In Grozny

Grozny, 4 December 1996 (RFE/RL) - Four Russian military personnel, including a woman, were kidnapped today in the Chechen capital Grozny.

Itar-tass says they were riding in a jeep in Grozny's Staropromislov region when they were seized by unidentified men.

The central Russian military command told the agency all roads in the area of the hijacking have been sealed off, and Chechens from the joint Russian-Chechen commandant's office are combing the region.

The incident comes as Russia was pulling its last combat troops out of Chechnya.

Just a day earlier, nine Russian soldiers in a convoy leaving Chechnya were dragged off their truck, stripped naked and beaten near the Russian military base, Severny.

Meanwhile, the State Duma today approved a resolution calling on President Boris Yeltsin to "review the appropriateness" of his order withdrawing the last combat troops from the separatist republic.

Mainly communists and nationalist legislators have opposed Yeltsin's decree, saying it is tantamount to granting Chechnya full-fledged independence.