Chechnya's Kremlin-backed president said Monday that Russian forces were involved in up to 10 percent of all kidnappings in the war-shattered region rife with abductions, Interfax news agency reported.
President Alu Alkhanov said 23 people disappeared in the first five months of the year, but noted that in the same period last year, 168 people were officially reported as having disappeared. He estimated that Russian forces were involved in 5 to 10 percent of the abductions.
Kidnappings have been common in the southern Russian region for years, with civilians and rights groups blaming Russian troops and separatist rebels as well as security forces under the command of the Russian-backed regional government.
Human rights groups claim Russian soldiers and Chechen security forces frequently act with brutal impunity, including killing, abducting and intimidating Chechen civilians.
Based in London, we are an informal group dedicated to supporting democracy and human rights throughout
the former Soviet Union. Our aims are:
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