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Russia/Chechnya: President Calls For Peace Accords With Moscow

Moscow,6 May 1997 (RFE/RL) - Chechen President Aslan Maskhadov has called for a peace accord with Moscow to be signed soon, saying the war between Chechnya and Russia had been "frozen but not ended." Maskhadov made the call in an interview, published today in the Russian weekly "Moskovkiye Novosti."

Russian President Boris Yeltsin is expected soon to meet with Maskhadov to discuss a political solution to the Chechen crisis. The Kremlin says the meeting will take place despite a recent series of bombings in southern Russia.

Itar-tass reports that Chechen Interior Minister Kazbek Makhashev will talk later today by phone with his Russian counterpart Anatoly Kulikov to discuss plans for a joint commission to investigate the bombings. Chechen authorities issued a warrant yesterday for the arrest of Salman Raduyev, a maverick field commander, who claimed responsibility for the latest bombings.

Also today two Russian journalists, abducted in Chechnya in March, were released. No details were given on how they had been freed nor by whom they had been held captive. Four other Russian journalists, kidnapped two months ago, are still held in Chechnya.