All Rich People In Russia's Caucasus Pay Tribute Money To Criminals - Official

Moscow, 16 June: Terrorists in the North Caucasus are not receiving financial support from aboard and have moved to self-support, the Coordination Centre of the Muslims of the North Caucasus has said.

"Today, those who are hiding in the woods are Russian citizens educated in the camps of (Chechen warlords) Khattab and Shamil... I don't think they receive direct financial assistance, because the rebels have already successfully imposed a tribute on all more or less well-off people in the North Caucasus," general representative of the Coordination Centre of the Muslims of the North Caucasus Shafig Pshikhachev said at a press conference in Interfax.

At the same time, he continued, extremists receive informational support from abroad and one can trace the location of their sites.

According to the mufti, rumours about the fabulous wealth of representatives of the official clergy are part of information warfare.

"When my brother (Mufti Anas Pshikhachev - Interfax) was killed and people gathered, even the president of Kabarda-Balkaria said: "I never thought that he was so poor, I thought he had something." All those who came were surprised how modestly the mufti of Kabarda-Balkaria lived," Pshikhachev said.

But later, he went on, people were told that "a whole truck of money" was allegedly taken from the mufti's yard. "This is war, this produces a certain impression, and this is why this is done," the mufti said.

For his part, director of the human rights centre of the World Russian People's Council and expert on Islam Roman Silantyev also said that the terrorist underground in Russia "became self-sufficient a long time ago". "Some time ago it was entirely dependent on foreign funding, but then at some point they became self-sufficient," he added.

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