Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues.
You know that as soon as the Government and the President’s administration learnt about the formation of your Commission, we vigorously backed your initiative, and we know that you are working hard. Let me say that our support has not been token support, and we are ready to back your work not because it will meet with a positive reaction in the Chechen Republic or other regions of Russia or abroad – far from it.
I would like to tell you that both I as the head of state and the Government are interested in your work being put on solid ground and meeting with success. Why? Because the Government of the Russian Federation and Russia in general have never sought and will not seek to conduct endless military actions to repress the Chechen people. We have said so from the very beginning and we continue to maintain it and will pursue only one goal: to fight against terror and banditry. But this does not mean that human rights and the laws of the Russian Federation should not be honoured or should be only partly honoured in Chechnya. On the contrary, I believe that public efforts, including your commission, will only be successful if they are aimed at securing respect for human rights, federal laws and the Constitution of the Russian Federation from everyone in Chechnya: from the federal authorities, local government bodies and all those who live and work there. That fully applies to the federal government bodies in Chechnya. In that sense your efforts, without any doubt, will help to meet the challenges facing Russia in that region of the Russian Federation.
I am ready to hear an account of everything you have done recently and listen to the problems you have encountered.
The Secretary of the Security Council, Sergei Ivanov, will be responsible for helping you to perform the tasks you face and reach the goals you have set yourselves.