Head of Chechen Administration to Run for Presidency

Head of the Chechen administration Akhmad Kadyrov has confirmed his intention to run for presidency in Chechnya. "I will run for presidency in the forthcoming elections in the republic," he said at a press conference in Moscow on Friday.

When speaking on possible rivals in the elections, Kadyrov said he "did not see them".

Commenting on the sceptical attitude of some international organisations to the referendum and its results, Kadyrov announced he was not too anxious about their opinion. "They should have come and seen for themselves how the referendum was conducted," he said. He himself did not expect voters to be so active, Kadyrov said. "Forecasts expected 80 percent of the population [to take part in the referendum], but the actual turnout was 96 percent," he pointed out.

He said also that Chechnya's interior minister had handed in his resignation. An acting interior minister has already been appointed, according to him.

When commenting on yesterday's terrorist attack in Grozny, Kadyrov said that "this was a terrorist attack against civilian population, not against the republic's law-enforcement structures." "There is no war" in Chechnya, "there are bandits there," he emphasised.

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