Excerpts from Opening Remarks at a Meeting with Government Members 2002-12-30 00:00:00 The Kremlin, Moscow Vladimir Putin: Unfortunately, the year ends with tragic events in Chechnya where another terrorist attack has been perpetrated. As regards the causes and the way the crime has been committed, it is the business of the law enforcement bodies and above all the Prosecutor’s Office to find that out. Having said that, the FSB and the Interior Ministry must analyse what has happened there and draw the corresponding conclusions. As regards the political assessment, I think it is clear to the overwhelming majority not only of politicians, but of ordinary citizens, that we witnessed another attempt to disrupt the process of political settlement that started in the Chechen Republic some time ago. The terrorists are trying to do it by the cruelest methods. They will not succeed. They can of course increase the number of victims, including victims among their own people, but they cannot derail the settlement process. Similarly, they cannot solve the more sinister task they have always set themselves and continue to pursue: to disrupt the process of stabilisation in the republic, to disrupt the process of strengthening the Russian state as a whole. But that is a separate subject that we will discuss later.