View settings

Font size:
Site colours:


Official website of the President of Russia

Transcripts   /

Press Statement on Arrival in Grozny

March 20, 2000, Grozny, Severny Airport

Vladimir Putin: We have two events planned here, for military and civilian staff. One is a meeting with the military commanders who have been in Chechnya for a long time and still have work to do here, to evaluate the results and set goals for the future. The other is a conference for the civilian staff on social and economic problems of the Chechen Republic’s reconstruction.

Some of the major problems facing the republic have been solved: the majority of large illegal armed groups have been destroyed. Nevertheless, we still have a lot of challenges to tackle in Chechnya, which will certainly take time and effort. It is the reason why we should not pull out all troops from Chechnya, but leave enough of our forces here to deal with current problems. On the other hand, there is no need to keep a redundant force here, partly because Russia has obligations under the Conventional Forces in Europe Treaty.

I am convinced that we will claim a victory together with the Chechen people. International terrorists have tried to use the Chechen people for their extremist purposes.

Once Russian troops leave Chechnya, the republic will once again start turning into a springboard for an attack on Russia. Therefore, the units of the United Group of Federal Forces will remain in Chechnya as long as needed.

March 20, 2000, Grozny, Severny Airport