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  • Publication Date: 03-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: Gadzhi Abashilov, the head of GTRK Dagestan, the Dagestani affiliate of Russia's state television and radio company, was killed in a drive-by shooting as he traveled home from work in Dagestan's capital, Makhachkala, on March 21. His driver was seriously injured in the attack. Just hours earlier, Ilyas Shurpaev, a Dagestan-born journalist who covered the North Caucasus for state television's Channel One, was found stabbed and strangled in his Moscow apartment after a neighbor reported a fire in the apartment. Russian news reports quoted investigators as saying that the perpetrators had set fire to the apartment in an attempt to conceal the crime.
  • Topic: Conflict Resolution, Security, Development
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia, North Caucasus
  • Publication Date: 07-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: The campaign to gather signatures on a petition calling for the return of Ruslan Aushev as Ingushetia's president has been completed. According to the opposition Ingushetiya.ru website, leaders of the opposition to Ingushestia's current president, Murat Zyazikov, said during a press conference in Moscow on July 10 that a total of 105,000 signatures had been gathered, out of which 80,000 had been forwarded to the federal authorities in Moscow. According to the opposition leaders, an additional 25,000 signatures were seized by members of the anti-organized crime directorate (UBOP) of Ingushetia's Interior Ministry during a raid.
  • Political Geography: Moscow, North Caucasus, Ingushetia
  • Publication Date: 07-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: Unidentified attackers wounded a policeman in a drive-by shooting in the Chechen town of Vedeno on July 16, Kavkazky Uzel reported. The gunmen shot the policeman, who was guarding a building housing a branch of the Russian Pension Fund, from a Zhiguli automobile and managed to get away, a Chechen police source told the website. Also on July 16, militants ambushed local police in the Shatoi district settlement of Musolt-Yurt, killing one policeman and wounding three, Itar-Tass reported, quoting a Chechen law-enforcement source. A group of Defense Ministry servicemen conducting a reconnaissance-engineering mission near the town of Shali hit a landmine on the roadside of the Agishty-Shali highway on July 15. One of the servicemen was injured. On July 14, unidentified gunmen driving in a Lada car fired automatic weapons at a car carrying two federal Interior Ministry officers in the Tersk Mountains in Chechnya's Groznensky district. The two officers—a colonel and a warrant officer—were severely wounded in the attack. On July 11, militants detonated a powerful explosive device in the path of a column of military vehicles in Chechnya's Shali district. The blast killed an officer from a unit of Interior Ministry Internal troops and wounded two contract servicemen.
  • Political Geography: Russia, Chechnya, North Caucasus
  • Publication Date: 07-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: Speaking during a government meeting in Grozny on July 19, Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov demanded that the heads of power and law-enforcement organs strictly follow the law in using land and installations in Chechnya. “The Chechen Republic is a full-fledged subject of the Russian Federation; the constitution and other laws of Russia and the Chechen Republic function here,” Newsru.com quoted him as saying. “And I am firmly convinced that not only the civilian authorities, but also the military command of units and sub-units deployed in the republic are also strictly obligated to observe them.”
  • Political Geography: Russia, Chechnya, North Caucasus
  • Publication Date: 08-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov on July 30 denied reports that he had been the target of an assassination attempt. “Those rumors are being generated either by the Wahhabis themselves or provocateurs straining for cheap sensationalism,” Gazeta.ru quoted Kadyrov as saying during a meeting with Chechnya's education and science minister, Anzor Muzaev. The Chechen president insisted that the situation in the republic is peaceful and stable. “Naturally, there is a circle of persons whom this [situation] doesn't suit,” he said. “This sort of verbiage has only one goal—to destabilize the situation in the region. These provocative fantasies are engendered by ideologists of the extremists and their henchmen. Jackals who don't have the guts to go into the woods themselves.” The Chechen president's press service also denied that there had been an attempt on Kadyrov's life, calling the reports “provocations aimed against the Chechen Republic and its president.”
  • Topic: Security, Ethnic Conflict
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia, North Caucasus
  • Publication Date: 09-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: Ruslan Yamadaev, the older brother of Vostok (East) battalion commander Sulim Yamadaev and former State Duma deputy who received a Hero of Russia award in August 2004 from then President Vladimir Putin, was shot to death in central Moscow on September 24. As is typically the case with high-profile murders in Russia, Yamadaev's killing has sparked a flurry of competing theories as to who was behind the deed.
  • Topic: Security, Ethnic Conflict
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia, Moscow, North Caucasus
  • Publication Date: 11-2008
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: Russian Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliev removed Musa Medov as Ingushetia's interior minister on November 24. Medov, along with Murat Zyazikov, who was removed as Ingushetia's president late last month (North Caucasus Weekly, October 30), were accused by the republic's opposition party of involvement in the August 31 murder of Magomed Yevloev, founder of the independent Ingushetiya.ru website (North Caucasus Weekly, September 5). Ingushetiya.ru's successor website, Ingushetia.org, reported on November 25 that Medov has been replaced by Colonel Ruslan Meiriev, a former employee of the police department in the Siberian town of Nizhnevartovsk. Newsru.com on November 25 quoted sources in the federal Interior Ministry as saying that Medov had been given a job in the ministry's apparatus in Moscow—which is in effect a promotion. The website reported that Meiriev had been introduced to the staff of Ingush President Yunus-Bek Yevkurov and Deputy Russian Interior Minister Colonel-General Arkady Yedelev.
  • Topic: Security, Ethnic Conflict
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia, Moscow, North Caucasus, Ingushetia
  • Author: Andrew McGregor
  • Publication Date: 10-2006
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: The Kremlin on September 18 asked the State Duma to approve an amnesty plan for militants in Chechnya and other republics of the North Caucasus. The Associated Press, citing Itar-Tass, quoted the chairman of the Duma committee on criminal legislation, Pavel Krasheninnikov, as saying that the Kremlin's amnesty would remain in effect for six months after its approval by parliament and would also apply to Russian servicemen suspected of committing crimes while serving in Chechnya and other republics in the North Caucasus. Interfax quoted Krasheninnikov as saying that the amnesty would not apply to “recidivists, foreigners or persons without citizenship,” or to Russian servicemen who sold weapons, ammunition or other military equipment while serving in the “counter-terrorist” operation in the North Caucasus. The Duma is scheduled to take up the Kremlin's amnesty plan on September 22.
  • Topic: Security, Ethnic Conflict
  • Political Geography: Russia, Chechnya, North Caucasus
  • Publication Date: 07-2006
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: Russian and Chechen officials alike continued to discuss the offer of amnesty that the federal authorities offered to the rebels in Chechnya and the North Caucasus in the wake of the death of Chechen rebel warlord Shamil Basaev. On August 1, Interfax reported that President Vladimir Putin praised the initiative during a meeting with members of his cabinet. “By all appearances, the decision to possibly grant amnesty to the people who were members of illegal armed groups was right,” Putin said. He added, however, in a comment directed to Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliev that “the work against those who continue their illegal activities should be stepped up.” Putin said that he had instructed Federal Security Service (FSB) Director Nikolai Patrushev, who also heads the National Anti-Terrorism Committee (NAK) and first floated the amnesty offer on July 15 (Chechnya Weekly, July 20), “to listen to proposals from the ministries and the other agencies at the next major Anti-Terrorism Committee meeting regarding plans to provide security in both the Chechen Republic and the North Caucasus as a whole.” According to Interfax, Putin asked how many people had laid down their arms since the amnesty was offered, and Nurgaliev responded that over 70 people had done so during the previous few days, with 12 people surrendering on July 29, seven on July 30 and ten on July 31. “This is happening not only in Chechnya and Dagestan, but also in other regions and republics in the Southern Federal District,” Nurgaliev said.
  • Topic: Security, Ethnic Conflict, Terrorism
  • Political Geography: Russia, Chechnya, North Caucasus
  • Publication Date: 07-2006
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: North Caucasus Weekly (formerly Chechnya Weekly), The Jamestown Foundation
  • Abstract: The death of Chechen rebel warlord Shamil Basaev (Chechnya Weekly, July 14) and Federal Security Service (FSB) Director Nikolai Patrushev's offer of amnesty to Chechnya's rebels (Chechnya Weekly, July 20) have been followed by a number of optimistic statements from federal and Chechen officials about the progress made against insurgents in Chechnya and the North Caucasus. On July 24, Interfax quoted Chechnya's chief prosecutor, Valery Kuznetsov, as claiming that 46 rebels had surrendered since the start of July. On July 26, Caucasus Times quoted Chechen law-enforcement agencies as saying that 50 members of “illegal armed formations” had given themselves up since the start of July, with the largest group of these fighters personally surrendering to Chechen Prime Minister Ramzan Kadyrov in Gudermes. Federal Deputy Interior Minister Arkady Yedelev said on July 26 that the total number of “illegal armed formation” members in the Southern Federal District today does not exceed 800, down from the earlier number of 1,200-1,800. On July 18, Kadyrov told the board of the Chechen Interior Ministry that only 50 active rebels remain in Chechnya, with part-time rebels and rebel sympathizers numbering only 200-300. Kadyrov said that he believed that there would be “good results” by August 1, the deadline for Patrushev's amnesty offer. “There was a den of the enemy in the republic; there were many visiting militants—Turks, Arabs, Azerbaijanis, Ingush, Dagestanis,” Itar-Tass quoted him as saying. “I think those remaining will come to us.” If not, Kadyrov added, they would face heavy sentences or “liquidation.”
  • Topic: Security, Ethnic Conflict, Law
  • Political Geography: Russia, Chechnya, North Caucasus