Clinton links treaty to Chechnya

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The Independent Online

President Clinton raised the pressure on Russia to curtail its military presence in Chechnya.

President Clinton raised the pressure on Russia to curtail its military presence in Chechnya.

He was speaking after heads of state signed an agreement to halve the numbers of warplanes, tanks and other heavy non-nuclear weapons in much of Europe.

The President was the second leader to sign the 30-nation Conventional Force Europe document - a modification of a pact first agreed on nine years ago, when the continent was still divided into the Soviet bloc and rival Western nations.

He then said that he would not ask Congress to ratify the treaty until Russia cuts forces and heavy weaponry in the north Caucasus "as quickly as possible".

"I will only submit this agreement to the Senate for advice and consent to ratification when Russian forces have in fact been reduced to the ... levels set forth in the adapted treaty," he said.

The treaty would "preserve NATO's ability to fulfill its post-Cold War responsibilities," and "enhance peace, security and stability throughout Europe."

But, in comments directed toward Moscow, he said the treaty will only work if we "have confidence that there will be real compliance."

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