Basayev: Russia’s more comfortable than Georgia

by Nathan Hamm on 11/5/2004

This may not be true, but it is nevertheless absolutely priceless:

In an interview intended for Canada’s Globe and Mail, Chechen rebel leader Shamil Basayev denied that his troops have used the Pankisi Gorge in Georgia as a base or refuge. He explained that “there are better conditions to relax in Chechnya than in impoverished Georgia, and if you need medical treatment it’s better and cheaper in Russia.”
The Globe and Mail received the interview from a Canadian journalist but demanded confirmation that the words were in fact Basayev’s. After the paper questioned the authenticity, the pro-rebel site Kavkaz_Center.com released it on its website, and RFE/RL later released excerpts on its website.
In the 5,000 word interview, Basayev also claimed that he has over 20 hidden shelters within Chechnya, has recovered his health after losing his leg in combat and is now able to hike 50 kilometers in one night.


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– author of 2991 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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