Chechnya rebel leader surrenders to Russia

Other News Materials 18 August 2006 17:17 (UTC +04:00)

(Reuters) - Chechen separatist leader Doku Umarov voluntarily surrendered to Russian authorities on Friday, a spokesman for the pro-Russian government in Chechnya said.

The spokesman said Umarov, the most powerful of remaining rebel commanders, turned up at a government headquarters in the Chechen town of Gudermes, reports Trend.

Umarov became the head of Chechen separatists in June. His only rival in the resistance movement, warlord Shamil Basayev, was killed in a truck blast in July.

"Now, illegal armed formations do not have a single leader authoritative among the fighters," Itar-Tass news agency quoted a Chechen government spokesman as saying.

The agency said Chechen Prime Minister Ramzan Kadyrov personally accepted Umarov's surrender.