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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

UN Calls for Aid for Chechnya

GENEVA -- The United Nations launched an appeal Friday for $21.7 million to provide more food, medicines and shelter to hundreds of thousands of Chechens inside and outside the ravaged territory.

But UN officials said it was too soon to encourage 200,000 civilians who fled to neighboring Ingushetia to return to Chechnya.

The Northern Caucasus appeal, covering the second half of the year, also seeks to increase aid to 150,000 displaced people living in squalid conditions in Chechnya itself.

The appeal was presented to donors by John McCallin, UN humanitarian coordinator in the Russian Federation. Donors led by the United States previously pledged $28 million toward a $32.9 million appeal last December for the first half of 2000.

"Over the next six months, the UN expects there to be no significant reduction oftension in Chechnya," the appeal said.

"The UN, therefore, holds that is too early to encourage a return of the approximately 200,000 displaced persons from Ingushetia to Chechnya."