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    IMPACT OF KADYROV'S ASSASSINATION ON STABILITY IN CHECHNYA SHOULDN'T BE OVERDRAMATIZED, ANALYSTS SAY

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    MOSCOW, May 13 (RIA Novosti) - The impact of the Chechen leader's assassination on stability in Chechnya should not be overdramatized, Russian analysts say. They assure that Ahmad Kadyrov's tragic death in a bomb explosion will have no major effect on Moscow's policy toward Chechnya, nor is it likely to undermine the peace process underway in the republic.

    The aftermath of Kadyrov's murder was the focus of a discussion held by the Open Forum club in Moscow Thursday. The Chechen President was killed in the capital of Grozny on May 9 as a bomb went off at a stadium where official V-E Day ceremonies were being held. Six other people died in the blast.

    "There is no power catastrophe in Chechnya now," said Sergei Markov, Director of the Institute of Political Research.

    Moscow is not going to change its policy vis-a-vis Chechnya now that President Kadyrov is no more, Markov believes. It will not cede power to separatists, but will continue efforts to restore peace in the republic, forming republican bodies of authority out of people whom the local population trusts.

    The assassination of the pro-Kremlin President has prompted many Western experts to predict that the resulting power vacuum will cause the situation in Chechnya to spiral out of control, escalating the years-long conflict between Russia and its rebellious republic.

    The May 9 terrorist act will not lead to a total collapse, said Viktor Tretyakov, a political analyst and the head of a publishing house.

    Central Electoral Commission Chair Alexander Veshnyakov announced earlier that the date for the next presidential polls was to be set within the next two weeks and they should take place before the first Sunday of September.

    Many analysts say it would be wiser to postpone the election until a new strong leader emerges, one Moscow could rely upon.

    None of the Chechen politicians has declared his intention to go for the republican presidency thus far. But already, political analysts are discussing candidates likely to come forward. A non-Chechen hopeful may win the office this time around, they predict.

    "The list of candidates will include not just ethnic Chechens, I think" said Khavazh Mityunin, president of the Russian think tank Center-Region: Reconstruction and Development.

    Chechen community activists in Russia hold that the republic needs a leader who could bring an end to the blood feud between its clans.

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