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Russia: Both Sides Satisfied With Chechnya Negotiations

Moscow, 26 February 1997 (RFE/RL) - A top Chechen official says a peace agreement could be signed soon with Russia following what both sides called a second day of successful negotiations today in Moscow. Negotiators discussed two main documents, including a peace agreement that would be signed by Russian President Boris Yeltsin and Chechen President Aslan Maskhadov, said the acting deputy prime minister of Chechnya, Movladi Udugov.

He said the other document was a general framwork spelling out terms for finalizing a comprehensive treaty between Russia and Chechnya.

Itar-tass quotes Udugov as saying negotiators also reviewed secondary documents, including one covering Russian compensation to Chechnya for war damages caused during the 21-month conflict.

Udugov and another member of the Chechen negotiating team, Akhmed Zakaev, were hopeful that both accords could be signed at the next round of peace talks scheduled for mid-March in Moscow.

The secretary of the Russian Security Council, Ivan Rybkin, also expressed satisfaction at today's talks.

In a related development, Russian Interior Minister Anatoly Kulikov, on a tour of the Caucasus, met with Ingush Vice President Boris Agapov, in Nazran, the capital of Ingushetia which borders Chechnya. Itar-tass says the two leaders held talks that focused, in part, on the security region in the Northern Caucasus.