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  Monday, December 9, 2019
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Four members of illegal armed groups have surrendered in Chechnya
Four members of illegal armed groups have surrendered in Chechnya, a police source in the troubled Russian republic in the North Caucasus said Thursday. Through a partial amnesty announced on July 15, following the killing of the region's number one terrorist Shamil Basayev, militants not involved in major atrocities were promised leniency. One of the militants surrendered in Gudermes, Chechnya's second largest city situated in the east of the republic. He is said to have fought against federal troops in the region since 1995. The three others gave themselves up in the republic's central and southern districts. The police spokesperson said the militants also surrendered their arms. A law granting amnesty to militants and servicemen guilty of offenses during the North Caucasus antiterrorism campaign came into force in late September. More than 300 militants have accepted the surrender offer since its announcement, mainly in Chechnya, according to Nikolai Patrushev, head of Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) and the National Antiterrorism Committee. Although the latest war in Chechnya officially ended in 2001, which together with the first left at least 100,000 of its population dead, periodic bombings and clashes between gunmen and federal troops still disrupt the republic's comparative calm, with the violence often spilling over into adjacent regions. Colonel-General Yevgeny Baryayev, the commander of Russia's Joint Forces in the North Caucasus, said in early November that about 700 gunmen continue to operate in Chechnya and areas bordering on the republic, which sank into bloodshed and atrocities following the collapse of the Soviet Union.
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