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Caucasus: Georgian Officials Arrest Two More In Failed Assassination

Grozny, 18 February 1998 (RFE/RL) - Georgian officials today arrested two more suspects in connection with last week's assassination attempt against President Eduard Shevardnadze. The arrests bring to seven the number of suspects detained in the case. Officials said the two men captured last night in the town of Zugdidi were supporters of former President Zviad Gamsakhurdia.

Shevardnadze has blamed the attack on supporters of Gamsakhurdia, who was Georgia's leader when the country gained independence after the disintegration of the Soviet Union. Gamsakhurdia was ousted in 1992 and died in 1994.

Meanwhile, Chechen President Aslan Maskhadov accused renegade Chechen warlord Salman Raduyev of deliberate subversive activities against Chechnya after Raduyev claimed responsibility for the attack. Maskhadov urged Raduyev to surrender to authorities. Chechnya's prosecutor general says criminal charges should be filed against him.