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New Chechen President Vows to Try to Bring Peace To the Region - 2004-10-05

The new pro-Kremlin president of Chechnya, Alu Alkhanov, has pledged to try to restore peace and security in the war-torn Russian republic.

Mr. Alkhanov made the promise after being inaugurated president today Tuesday, five months after the assassination of the region's previous leader.

Officials kept the time and location of the ceremony in Grozny secret until a short time before the event.

Mr. Alkhanov, a former top security official in Chechnya, was elected in August in a vote international observers criticized as rigged to favor Moscow's choice.

The election was held to replace Akhmad Kadyrov, who was killed in a May bombing attack in Grozny.

Moscow has been battling separatists in Chechnya for most of the past decade in fighting that has devastated the breakaway region.