Sergei Yastrzhembsky on Situation in Chechnya

Despite the recent terrorist acts in Chechnya, the general situation in the republic from the point of view of crime level improved after the March 23rd referendum, Sergei Yastrzhembsky, the Russian president's aide, announced on Wednesday.

The political process initiated by the referendum keeps gaining in strength, said the aide. Commenting on the way some deputies from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe described the Chechen situation, he said part of Europe's public and political forces "lived in the past." "Only a blind man can fail to see that the referendum added an entirely new tendency to the social life," he stressed.

According to his words, the constitutional referendum outlined the federal authorities and the republic's population's "apparent aspiration" towards a political solution to the problem.

Yastrzhembsky said he believed there were forces in Europe that expected "to see Moscow conducting talks with Maskhadov." The referendum, however, proved there can be other political solutions, he emphasised.

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