It's strategically vital to the Russian Federation for two reasons. First, access routes to both the Black Sea and theCaspian Sea go from the center of the federation through Chechnya. Second, vital Russian oil and gas pipeline connections with Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan also run through Chechnya.
The declaration of full independence issued in 1993 by the Chechen government of Dzhokar Dudayev led to civil war in that republic, and several Russian-backed attempts to overthrow Dudayev failed in 1993 and 1994.
Following the First Chechen War with Russia, Chechnya gained de facto independence as the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria. Russian federal control was restored during the Second Chechen War. Since then there has been a systematic reconstruction and rebuilding process, though sporadic fighting continues in the mountains and southern regions of the republic.
Chechnya Facts and Figures
Official Name Chechen Republic
Population 1,268,989 (2010)
Largest City & Capital Grozny
Languages Chechen and Russian
Official Currency Ruble
Currency Converter (here)
Religions Islam is the predominant religion in Chechnya as Chechens are overwhelmingly adherents to Sunni Islam.
Land Area 17,300 km2 (6,679.6 sq mi)
Latitude/Longitude 43º 24N, 45º 43E
Chechnya Suggested Links
Crisis in Chechnya