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Saturday, 18 September 2010

Poland: Chechen charged in Russia with terrorism, arrested in Poland

Polish police detained an exiled Chechen separatist leader wanted by Russia on terrorism charges, raising the possibility Poland will have to decide on his extradition.
Police were acting on an international warrant to arrest Akhmed Zakayev, who was going to attend a meeting of Chechen exiles near Warsaw today, Mariusz Sokolowski, a police spokesman, said by telephone. Zakayev has been delivered to prosecutors, who will decide whether to hold him pending a Russian extradition request.
“The government will make an independent decision on this matter in keeping with our national interest and sense of decency and fairness,” Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk said on Polish State Radio. Tusk, who took office in 2007, has made better relations with Russia a priority of his foreign policy.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned Poland against holding meetings of Chechens living abroad two days ago. The southern Russian province, which fought two wars against the federal government between 1994 and 2000, is now ruled by Ramzan Kadyrov, an ally of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Zakayev’s presence in the U.K., where he holds political asylum, has damaged British-Russian relations.
More here.
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