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A federal troop encampment is visible from the highway in northern Chechnya

Source: Meduza

On April 20, federal troops were reportedly deployed to the Nadterechny District in northern Chechnya, which borders Ingushetia, North Ossetia, and the Stavropol Territory. The newspaper Novaya Gazeta published an eyewitness video showing a small encampment and a cluster of military vehicles along the highway outside the villages of Bratskoe, Beno-Yurt, and Znamenskoye.

Federal troops deployed to Chechnya’s Nadterechny District
Novaya Gazeta

According to Novaya Gazeta’s sources in the armed forces, the deployment is part of secret military exercises. The newspaper says these exercises in the Nadterechny District are normally conducted farther from populated areas, closer to the forest. 

On April 5, Chechnya was the first region of Russia to announce that it was closing its boundaries to other parts of the country, in an effort to contain the spread of coronavirus. Currently, only food suppliers and limited categories of transit are permitted into the republic. A permit system also restricts local residents’ movements within Chechnya.

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