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Chechnya: War Cost More Than 2,700 Russian Lives

Moscow, 2 February 2001 (RFE/RL) -- The Russian military said today that 2,728 Russian troops have been killed in the war in Chechnya. General Valery Manilov, the first deputy chief of staff, said 7,971 soldiers had been wounded. In a toll issued last October, one year after the latest conflict in the breakaway republic began, Russia said it had to that point lost about 2,470 men.

Manilov estimated Chechen rebel losses at about 15,000. There was no indication of how this figure was reached.

Manilov said there were about 80,000 Russian federal troops now in Chechnya, including 40,000 army servicemen. He said there would be no "mass" withdrawal of Russian forces from Chechnya, and that enough forces would remain to secure the establishment of a peaceful life in the republic.

Nikolai Patrushev, the head of Russia's Federal Security Service, said yesterday that some 5,000 separatists are believed to be still fighting Moscow's forces in Chechnya. He called for an intensified air campaign against the rebels.