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Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov has proposed holding a referendum on amendments to the republic's Constitution
Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov has proposed holding a referendum on amendments to the republic's Constitution, the chief of the presidential and governmental staff said Thursday. "The Constitution of the Chechen republic should be amended in compliance with federal laws, with all existing contradictions removed. This should be done by means of a referendum," Abdulkakhir Izrailov quoted Kadyrov as saying. Chechnya's Constitution was adopted in March 2003 by means of a referendum. "All contradictions existing in the fundamental law with federal laws adopted since March 2003 should be removed," Kadyrov was quoted as saying. Chechnya's parliament said earlier in March that the North Caucasus republic's newly appointed president would be inaugurated April 5. Russian President Vladimir Putin nominated Ramzan Kadyrov to the presidency in early March, and the Chechen parliament approved him as president the following day. In mid-February, Putin accepted the resignation of President Alu Alkhanov, whose term was due to expire in 2008, and appointed him to the post of deputy justice minister in the central government. The move was widely seen as clearing the way for the ex-prime minister and acting President Kadyrov to become president. Kadyrov, the son of the late President Akhmad Kadyrov, who had been in charge of his father's security and is popular among Chechens, was unable to take up the post following his father's assassination in May 2004 because at the time he had not yet reached the age of 30 - a precondition for presidential candidates set by the Chechen Constitution. Alkhanov filled the position in the August 2004 election, in which he was the only candidate backed by the Kremlin. Kadyrov was appointed first deputy prime minister and promoted to the post of advisor to Putin's envoy in the Southern Federal District several months later. In November 2005, the younger Kadyrov became acting prime minister and later prime minister of his home republic. In October 2006, he turned 30, and following Alkhanov's resignation in February 2007, he was appointed acting president of Chechnya.
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