The Month in Brief - November 2007

November 1

Skylink's subsidiary "Sotovaya svyaz Chernozemya“ won a tender to operate a GSM 900 mobile network in the Chechen Republic, Rossvyazokhrankultura announced.

November 3

Nine people, most probably local hunters and gamekeepers, were killed near the village of Lechinkay, Kabardino-Balkaria. Their corpses were discovered on November 5.

November 4

Unidentified masked attackers shot three migrant workers at the hostel of a brickworks in the Ingush village of Yandare.

November 5

Two railway locomotive drivers of Armenian nationality were killed by unidentified attackers in the Ingushetian city of Nazran.

Two Russian soldiers were attacked in their military vehicle near the Dagestan town of Buynaksk. On the following day they died in hospital.

November 6

Zhaloudi Saralyapov, chairman of the Parliament of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria, published a resolution placing full authority in that body, according to a Chechenpress report.

November 7

Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov sacked his deputy interior minister, Alambek Yasayev, allegedly for criticizing the republic's law enforcement bodies.

Russia's First Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov, on a visit to the Chechen Republic, said he is satisfied with progress made on the work of restoration and reconstruction there.

A public meeting in Ingushetia's Nazran asked President Putin to create an independent commission to investigate the killings in the republic.

Georgia's President Mikhail Saakashvili declared a state of emergency througout the country for 15 days. On the following day he proposed that presidential elections be held ahead of time, on January 5, 2008.

November 8

The European Court of Human Rights condemned Russia for failing to investigate the case of Chechen citizen Suleyman Medov, who was subjected to torture by Russian troops in 2000.

November 9

Movsur Ibragimov resigned as Chechen Nationalities, Press and Information Minister. A few days later he was replaced by Shamsail Saraliyev.

Rakhim Amriyev, the 6-year-old son of a local resident of the village of Chemulga in Ingushetia's Sunzhensky district, was killed during the course of a "special operation" conducted by security forces at his home.

November 12

Russian media reported that Major General Vladimir Shamanov, the former Ulyanovsk governor who played an active role in the first and second Chechen wars, will be appointed as new chief of Main Command of the Russian Armed Forces, in charge of the training of troops.

One person was killed and three were wounded when a group of Russian cellular communications experts came under fire in the village of Nasyr-kort near Nazran, Ingushetia.

Eight alleged guerrillas were killed in Makhachkala, the capital of Dagestan, during a counter-terrorist operation there.

November 13

Moscow-backed Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov called on Ichkerian resistance leader Dokka Umarov to give himself up to the authorities and get medical treatment.

In their "Appeal to Resistance Fighters", deputies of the Parliament of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria called for resolute opposition to the recent declaration of a Caucasian Emirate by Dokka Umarov, labelling it "political sabotage".

Kabardino-Balkaria's President Arsen Kanokov visited the Chechen Republic.

November 14

Dagestani guerrillas of the Jamaat Shariat confirmed their allegiance to Dokka Umarov as "Emir of the Muslims of the Caucasus", according to a press release on their website.

Chechenpress reported that the Parliament of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria passed resolutions appointing new representatives of Ichkeria abroad. Many of them are the same individuals who were earlier appointed by Ichkerian President Dokka Umarov.

High-ranking police officer Salman Arapkhanov was shot in the Ingush village of Ordzhonikidzevskaya - he later died in hospital.

November 15

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ordered Russia to pay a total of 264,000 euros in compensation to three Chechen nationals, namely Khamila Isayeva, whose husband Sultan Isayev was detained by Russian soldiers in the village of Alkhan-Kala in April 2001 and then disappeared; Khanbatay Khamidov, whose property was confiscated and destroyed by Russian forces in the Chechen village of Bratskoye in 1999; and Khamzat Kukayev, whose son, Chechen police officer Aslanbek Kukayev, was found dead after he was detained by Russian forces in Grozny in November 2000. Russia also has to pay them a total of about 18,000 euros to cover their court expenses.

One person was killed and two were wounded during an exchange of fire in the Sunzhensky district village of Assinovskaya in the Chechen-Ingush borderland.

November 16

The OSCE's Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights announced it would not send observers to monitor the December 2 parliamentary elections in Russia due to Moscow's obstructions.

November 17

In Nalchik a man detained on suspicion of participation in the November 3 killing of nine hunters and gamekeepers in Kabardino-Balkaria died. According to the official report, he committed suicide.

November 18

Imran Gaziyev, former deputy head of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria's office in Azerbaijan, was shot and killed in Baku.

November 19

Akhmed Zakayev resigned as Foreign Minister of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.

November 20

The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists honoured Novaya gazeta editor-in-chief Dmitry Muratov with an International Press Freedom Award.

November 21

In Dagestan Farid Babayev, a local human rights defender and local leading candidate of the Yabloko opposition party in the December 2 Russian parliamentary elections, was shot in his home and later died in the hospital in the republic's capital city of Makhachkala.

November 22

Six people died as a result of a blast that ripped through a bus near the North Ossetian village of Elkhotovo at the border with Kabardino-Balkaria.

The Russian daily Kommersant wrote that British human rights lawyer William Bowring, who helped Chechens to seek justice at the European Court of Human Rights and was delivering a series of lectures in the South Russian city of Astrakhan, was recently ordered to leave Russia, allegedly because of visa irregularities. Bowring arrived home on November 17, the daily noted.

November 23

The Parliament of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria appointed Akhmed Zakayev acting Premier, while North Caucasus Emir Dokka Umarov accused him of treason.

Chechen national Said Batalov was repatriated from the Czech Republic to Russia, thus becoming the first person to whom the Russia-EU agreement on readmission, signed in May 2006 and entering force in June 2007, was applied.

Unknown armed men abducted Ren-TV's three-member film crew and the chairman of the Memorial Human Rights Center, Oleg Orlov, from the Assa Hotel in Ingushetiya's Nazran. After beating them up, the abductors released them in a field near the Ingush village of Nesterovskaya.

November 24

Ingush authorities used force to prevent an unauthorized opposition rally from taking place in Nazran.

November 26

Chechen resistance fighters clashed with government forces near the village of Kharsenoi in Chechnya's Shatoysky district.

November 27

Former Russian police officer Sergei Lapin (aka Cadet) was again sentenced by a court in Grozny's Oktyabrsky district for beating and torturing local resident Zelimkhan Murdalov, this time to 10 and a half years in prison, compared with a 11-year sentence he was given on March 29, 2005.

November 29

The European Court on Human Rights condemned Russia for the killing of three elderly civilians by Russian forces in Grozny's Staropromyslovsky district in January 2000, and ordered the Russian government to pay 60,000 euros in moral damages to the victims' relative Zaynap Tangiyeva, an Ingush woman.

Russia's Supreme Court upheld the lower court's verdict that sent a group of Russian servicemen under the command of Captain Ulman to prison for killing Chechen civilians.

In Oslo, the Norwegian Helsinki Committee awarded its Andrei Sakharov Freedom Prize for 2007 to Svetlana Gannushkina, leader of the Russian organization Civic Assistance Committee, for her outstanding and courageous promotion of human rights in Russia and Chechnya.

The website announced that the organizing committee for the nationwide rally in Ingushetia was continuing its work, with Mashkarip Aushev elected as its chairman.

November 30

Chechnya's human rights ombudsman Nurdi Nukhadzhiyev met with Memorial's Oleg Orlov to coordinate their joint efforts to find the whereabouts of people who have been abducted or have "disappeared" in Chechnya.


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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