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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Police Find Cache of Explosives




Russian security officials have detained a Chechen woman for hiding explosives in her Moscow apartment and are holding two other Chechen women for smuggling weapons into the city, officials said Monday.


Security officials and police seized 500 grams of plastic explosives, a detonator and a remote control switch from the apartment, said a spokesman for the Federal Security Service, or FSB.


The explosives were similar to the type used in two bomb attacks in the cities of Nalchik and Voronezh last year, the spokesman said.


During a search of the apartment, police found documents indicating that the bombers had used teenage females to carry out some of the attacks, Interfax said.


Police and FSB officers were led to the explosives cache after they detained two other Chechen women for trying to bring weapons into Moscow, Interfax said. The women reportedly had 26 pistols, two silencers and a supply of cartridges when they were detained at a railroad station.


Chechnya's political status remains unresolved after the 1994-96 war for independence against Russia, which ended with Moscow withdrawing its troops. Moscow insists Chechnya remains part of Russia, but Chechnya says it is an independent state.


Chechen officials had threatened to block an upcoming visit by Russian President Boris Yeltsin -- his first since the end of the war -- unless Yeltsin makes it as the leader of a foreign state.


But Monday, Chechen officials praised plans for a visit and vowed to ensure Yeltsin's security.


The visit would help establish "civilized friendly relations," Chechen Vice President Vakha Arsanov was quoted as saying by Itar-Tass.


No date has been set for the visit, planned for January, Itar-Tass quoted Yeltsin's spokesman Sergei Yastrzhembsky as saying.