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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Yandarbiyev's Bodyguard Surrenders

APKadyrov, right, and Amirkhan Yandarbiyev speaking in Gudermes on Friday.
ROSTOV-ON-DON -- A senior bodyguard for slain Chechen rebel leader Zelimkhan Yandarbiyev and five associates have surrendered to regional authorities.

Yandarbiyev's nephew, Amirkhan, turned himself in to Chechen officials, along with another nephew and an associate Friday. Two more former bodyguards and a driver surrendered Saturday.

Yandarbiyev, Chechnya's acting president from 1996 to 1997, was killed by a car bomb in February 2004 in Qatar, where he had sought refuge. Moscow had sought his extradition on charges of terrorism and al-Qaida links, and the United States and the United Nations had accused him of having ties to militants.

Chechen Prime Minister Ramzan Kadyrov said Friday that the men had turned themselves in as part of an amnesty offer that was scheduled to expire Monday.

Federal authorities offered the amnesty plan last year in an effort to persuade militants in Chechnya and surrounding regions to disarm and surrender to authorities. Officials have said several hundred fighters have turned themselves in.

Also Friday, a federal soldier was injured when a booby trap exploded while he was conducting a search operation in Chechnya, authorities said.

The soldier was hospitalized with serious injuries after the explosion in a wooded area outside the village of Vysokogornoye in the province's southern Shatoi region, the Interior Ministry's Chechen headquarters said.

A search was under way for those responsible for constructing and planting the device, which was made from land-mine parts.