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Chechnya: Council Of Europe Group To Review Human Rights

Moscow, 18 September 2000 (RFE/RL) - A delegation from the Council of Europe is due to travel to Chechnya today to check on how well Russian forces are upholding human rights commitments in the breakaway republic. The delegation, led by Lord Judd of Britain, is to visit a site in northern Chechnya to meet with Russian human rights representative Vladimir Kalamanov and to tour a refugee camp. The visit comes amid continued sporadic clashes in Chechnya between Russian forces and separatist fighters. The Council of Europe's parliamentary assembly this past spring stripped Russia of its voting rights over allegations of indiscriminate killing and human rights abuses in the military's campaign in Chechnya. But Russia retained its membership in the council, which monitors human rights and democracy issues.