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Chechnya: 8,000 cross in two days

Briefing notes

Chechnya: 8,000 cross in two days

5 November 1999

The situation at the Ingush Chechen border has been somewhat defused after the Russians relaxed border controls Wednesday. Over the past two days more than 8,000 people have crossed the border which is now open from 7am to 5pm. The stream continues. While the border situation is better, the burden increases upon Ingushetia which now hosts almost 200,000 people displaced from Chechnya. UNHCR is planning more convoys to Ingushetia, including the supply of winterised tents, baby food and hygiene kits. The Ingush authorities say 400 babies have been born among the refugee population since the crisis started.

The UN interagency mission yesterday visited the border area and met with Russia's emergencies minister, Sergei Shoigu, at the border. They also met with Ingush officials. The mission is now on its way to Dagestan.