Presidential Aide: Chechen fighters receive irregular financial assistance

'The financing of Chechen rebels from abroad has recently become irregular,' announced Sergei Yastrzhembsky, an aide to President Putin, at a press conference yesterday. He said that 'whenever the fighters receive some money, they arm themselves and commit terrorist acts.' 'The extremists are increasingly resorting to suicide tactics brought to Chechnya by foreign mercenaries, who have been under the command of Abu Walid since the death of his predecessor, Khattab,' added Yastrzhembsky.

Yastrzhembsky stressed that Russia had uncovered the Chechen fighters' financing mechanisms thanks to cooperation with members of the anti-terrorism coalition, especially the US. He added that financial sources within Russia had 'by and large been cut off.' Yastrzhembsky believes that 'this explains the relatively low level of underground military activity in Chechnya.'

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