Chechen Envoy Denounces Terrorism; Appeals to President Bush, U.S. Congress

The Chechen Times

Dr. Salambek Maigov, the Chechen Representative to the Russian Federation, met privately last week with officials from the U.S. Department of Defense and U.S. Department of State to discuss the common threat of international terrorism and political mechanisms for resolving the longstanding Russo-Chechen war.

"The government of Chechen President Aslan Maskhadov has no connection to the recent terrorist acts in Moscow," Maigov said, "We want the civilized world to known that the Chechen people and their democratically elected government categorically condemn terrorism, be it in Chechnya, Russia or anywhere else in the world."

Maigov met with several members of the U.S. Congress and Congressional foreign and defense policy staff during his six-day mission in the United States. Speaking at a press conference hosted by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty in Washington, he urged U.S. President George W. Bush to help the Chechen government bring about the peaceful resolution of the conflict.

"The United States must tell Russia to stop this genocidal war," said Maigov, "We call on President Bush to raise this issue at his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in September."

Dr. Maigov visited the United States as a guest of the American Committee for Peace in Chechnya. On July 16th, he briefed human rights organizations including Amnesty International, Freedom House, Human Rights Watch, Refugees International, the U.S. Committee for Refugees and the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum on humanitarian conditions in the war-torn republic.

"Russian officials have acknowledged an average of 106 extra-judicial executions in Chechnya each month," Maigov said, "Against this backdrop, the Kremlin's claims that conditions have improved after the constitutional referendum in March are simply not credible."

Maigov discussed the recent Kremlin-backed referendum and other issues in private meetings with U.S. foreign policy experts at prestigious research institutes including the American Enterprise Institute, the Brookings Institution, the Center for Strategic & International Studies, the Foundation for the Defense of Democracy, the Jamestown Foundation, the RAND Corporation and Johns Hopkins University.

He also met privately with former U.S. National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski and former Congressman Stephen Solarz, who, together with former U.S. Secretary of State Alexander Haig, are the co-chairmen of the American Committee for Peace in Chechnya.

Following an exclusive interview with The Washington Times, Dr. Maigov concluded his mission to the United States with a news conference at the National Press Club on Friday, July 18th.

Founded in 1999, the American Committee for Peace in Chechnya is a bipartisan coalition of distinguished Americans dedicated to promoting a peaceful end to the war in Chechnya.