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#9 - JRL 7067
LESS THAN 1% OF CHECHENS WANT TO ELECT SEPARATISTS

MOSCOW, February 18, 2003. /from a RIA Novosti correspondent/. - Less than 1% of the Chechens want to elect their prospective president from separatist ranks, Russian Presidential Aide Sergei Yastrzhembsky said in a live interview with the Rossiya radio station, citing the figures suggested by an independent poll carried out in the Chechen republic. According to him, it reveals Maskhadov's unpopularity among the electorate.

Speaking of Salambek Maigov, the Russian Presidential Aide stressed that he "could not be considered Maskhadov's legitimate representative, because had legally recognized Maskhadov himself." That is why "no one is going to negotiate with Maigov," Yastrzhembsky stressed adding that Maigov "was not wanted by law-enforcement agencies."

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