Members of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), instead of carrying out humanitarian projects in Chechnya, are only "agitating emotions" surrounding Chechnya. Diplomatic sources in Moscow expressed this opinion to a RIA Novosti correspondent on Friday. According to the sources, Russia " has never put any obstacles in the way of OSCE officials in Chechnya and, with good reason, expects that its representatives will strictly adhere to the mandate to observe Russian legislation and fully cooperate with the federal forces." Actually, the sources stated, "a series of social projects, which earlier were declared beneficial to the republic, in particular, in areas of health and education have so far not been completed." Instead of accomplishing them, OSCE representatives "are being tempted to paint the situation in Chechnya in a negative light, particularly from the point of view of human rights". OSCE members began their work in Chechnya in 1995 with the aim of stabilising the situation in the republic, based on the OSCE's principle of observing constitution and respect for Russian territorial integrity. In 1998 the group, on its initiative, was brought to Moscow for reasons of the organisers' safety. The group's work restarted in Chechnya on June 15th, 2001.
The groups of the Armed Forces of Russia blocked the town of Lisichansk from the south, an official representative for the Ministry of Defense, Lieutenant General Igor Konashenkov said