The Month in Brief - October 2007

October 1

The congress of the pro-Kremlin United Russia Party in Moscow decided that the Kremlin-backed Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov would head the ticket for the party's Chechen branch in the upcoming December State Duma elections. At the same time, President Putin accepted the party's proposal that he head its federal ticket for the elections.

October 2

One policeman was killed and several more wounded as the result of an explosion at a cafe in Grozny.

It was announced that former Ichkerian MP Vagap Tutakov was to work on matters that concerned the return of his compatriots to their native country.

October 3

Dokka Umarov, President of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria, signed a number of decrees honouring slain top guerrilla commanders, including Abdul-Khalim Sadullayev and Shamil Basayev, and making changes in the command of the guerrilla forces, the information and propaganda website Kavkaz-center announced on October 8.

October 4

The European Court of Human Rights (EHCR) ordered Russia to pay almost 150,000 euros in compensation to three Chechen residents who became victims of a "mop-up" by federal troops in Grozny in January 2000.

The Swedish government decided not to extradite former Chechen guerrilla Magomed Uspayev to Russia, where the Prosecutor-General suspects him of involvement in the abduction and murder of journalist Vladimir Yatsin in Chechnya in the summer of 1999.

An international forum in Nizhny Novgorod to commemorate Anna Politkovskaya, organized by local NGOs and scheduled for October 5-6, was thwarted by the authorities. On October 6, several foreign human rights workers were briefly detained.

The ceremonial re-opening of a cement factory which has been under reconstruction for several years took place in Chechnya's Chiri-Yurt.

Magomed Elzhurkayev, the CEO of Chechnya's largest printing concern, was charged with theft of public funds amounting to more than 1 million roubles.

October 5

In London, Natalya Estemirova of the Chechen branch of the Russian human rights group Memorial received the Anna Politkovskaya Award from the nongovernmental organization "RAW in WAR" (Reach All Women In War).

October 6

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that his new special envoy to the Southern Federal Distrtict would be Grigory Rapota, former secretary-general of the Eurasian Economic Community.

October 7

Events commemorating journalist Anna Politkovskaya, who was murdered on October 7 2006, took place in major European cities as well as some Russian cities.

At least four servicemen were killed and ten wounded when a police convoy was ambushed on the Dargo-Vedeno road in Chechnya's Vedensky district.

October 8

Chechen activist Said-Emin Ibragimov ended his hunger strike after receiving a written response from Terry Davis, Secretary General of the Council of Europe, to his demand that the issue of Chechnya be considered within the framework of legal norms. The protest lasted over a month.

The opening of a Chechen national equestrian complex took place in Gudermes.

A local police investigator was killed in the village of Sagopshi in Ingushetia's Malgobeksky district.

October 9

Two guerrillas and a soldier were killed in a battle which took place in a location between the villages of Tazen-Kala and Zhani-Vedeno in Chechnya's Vedensky district.

Two guerrillas were killed and another detained in the Dagestani capital of Makhachkala.

October 10

Three Russian human rights activists - Svetlana Gannushkina, Oleg Orlov and Yekaterina Sokiryanskaya - met visiting French President Nicolas Sarkozy at the French embassy in Moscow to discuss the human rights situation in Russia with him.

General Nikolai Rogozhkin announced that 2,500 auxiliary troops of the federal Interior Ministry had been withdrawn from Ingushetia in late September, but eyewitness reports from the places where the troops had been deployed this past summer did not confirm his statement at all.

Four deputy ministers were appointed to Ingushetia's Interior Ministry. Three of them come from Moscow and St Petersburg.

Two policemen were shot dead in the centre of Ingushetia's largest city Nazran.

October 11

The Ingushetian president's uncle Uruskhan Zyazikov, who was kidnapped on March 23, was released in his ancestral village of Barsuki.

October 13

A local woman was killed by a landmine blast near the village of Mulkoi in Chechnya's Itum-Kalinsky district.

October 14

On Moscow's Ostozhenka Street a group of unidentified gunmen carried out an armed attack on two ethnic Chechens, Alikhan Mutsayev and Beslan Saydulayev, both members of law enforcement agencies. Mutsayev was killed on the spot, and Saydulayev was hospitalized with serious gunshot wounds.

Unknown assailants shot dead two members of a Russian family as well as their neighbour in the Ingushetian town of Karabulak. Another member of the family was wounded.

October 18

The State Duma did not pass a motion by hardline Russian nationalist deputy Viktor Alksnis calling for the declaration of a state of emergency in Ingushetia.

Four Russian policemen were killed in the village of Ekazhevo, Ingushetia.

October 19

Two young men were killed and a third was wounded when unknown gunmen opened fire with sub-machine guns on a group of Ingush in the village of Chermen (formerly Bazorkino) in the disputed district of Prigorodny, North Ossetia. The third young men died on November 2 in the hospital.

The Czech NGO People in Need, which during the first and second Chechen war implemented humanitarian projects in the North Caucasus, announced it had regained a licence for work in Russia it lost in 2005.

October 21

Amir Ramzan (Ramzan Saluyev), a Chechen guerrilla commander in charge of the Shatoysky district, and his assistant were killed in the southwestern part of Chechnya, the information and propaganda website Kavkaz-center announced on November 1.

October 23

A grenade explosion ripped through a minibus at the border between the Kazbekovsky and Khasavyurtovsky districts of Dagestan, killing a young female local resident. According to the latest information, the grenade belonged to a young male passenger.

October 24

The International Committee of the Red Cross announced it would wind up its relief aid to Chechnya. The final distribution of food and other aid would be carried out between October 24 and November 20.

Two men, the Khidriyev brothers, suspected of being behind the August 13 Nevsky Express passenger train bombing, were apprehended in the Ingush village of Ekazhevo.

October 25

Czech national Hana Demeterova, suspected of having swindled a large number of people in the North Caucasus under the guise of humanitarian work, was detained in Grozny after she entered Chechnya without the obligatory special permit.

One policeman was killed and another wounded in an exchange of fire with guerrillas during a special operation on the outskirts of the village of Adil-Otar in Dagestan's Khasavyurtovsky district.

The Russian daily Kommersant reported that the North Caucasus prosecutor's office had renewed its investigation of the case against Magomed Yevloyev, owner of the web site. The investigation dates back to 1999.

October 26

The well-known Chechen entrepreneur and ex-Chechen State Council chairman Malik Saidullayev received a gunshot wound on Moscow's Leninsky Prospect, where the offices of his company are located.

A rally took place in Moscow to commemorate the victims of the 2002 Dubrovka theatre siege.

October 27

A rally took place on Moscow's Lubyanka Square in memory of the victims of the Ingush-Ossetian conflict of 1992.

October 28

PAX Christi NGO representative Annemarie Gielen, who works on the problems of Chechnya, was detained at Moscow's Domodedovo airport and refused entry to Russia. On the following day she had to leave for Brussels.

October 30

RFE/RL broadcast a message by Dokka Umarov in which the Chechen resistance commander declared himself Emir of a North Caucasus islamic state. The message caused a split among representatives of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria and was especially criticized by the London-based Ichkerian representative Akhmed Zakayev.

Russian Deputy Interior Minister Arkady Yedelev announced that the special operation in Ingushetia was extended to last until the beginning of the elections to the Russian State Duma (December 2).

October 31

Eight people were killed in a bus explosion in the city of Togliatti (in Russian Tolyatti) in Russia's Volga Federal District.


Compiled by Prague Watchdog. Along with these monthly summaries, we also publish weekly summaries, distributing them on Mondays to the subscribers of our free weekly newsletter.




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