On Tuesday, armed separatists stormed the Chechen parliament building in Grozny, the country's capital.
Within hours, at least six people were reported dead as attackers tried to seize the republic's parliament in a suicide attack. Russian news reports said at least two attackers blew themselves up and another was killed in an exchange of gunfire.
The attack has exposed what many see as Russia's failure to pacify the region, despite claims by Moscow that it has imposed stability there.
Russia's leaders are struggling to contain a growing separatist insurgency in the North Caucasus, a strip of impoverished, mainly Muslim provinces along Russia's predominantly Orthodox Christian southern border.
So, will Moscow change course in Chechnya, and if so how? And who is calling the shots in the Kremlin, Medvedev or Putin?
Inside Story, with presenter Hoda Abdedlahamid, discusses with Alexey Malashenko, a Caucasus expert at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Mohammad Shishani, the vice-president of the World Chechen Congress, and Lilit Gevorgyan, a Russia and Central Asia expert at IHS Global Insight.
This episode of Inside Story aired from Tuesday, October 19, 2010.