Persoverzicht Tsjetsjenië - januari 2007

9 januari 2007

- Public Chamber formed in Chechnya: According to the press, the Public Chamber has been formed in Chechnya with a view to play a role to restore stability and in development processes in Chechnya. (Interfax)

11 januari 2007

- Shootout with militants in Chechnya; operation against militants in Dagestan: (i) According to media reports, one militant was killed in a shootout with police and servicemen of the Defence Ministry’s Vostok (‘East’) battalion yesterday in Chechnya’s Vedeno district. No casualties among federal troops were reported. (ii) Electronic media report about a special operation early morning at an apartment block in Makhachkala against a group of suspected militants. Dagestani police said four militants had been killed in the operation. (Interfax, Lenta.ru, RIAN)

- Chechens want to change date of Fatherland Defenders’ Day: Dailies report that Chechen authorities have asked the federal Government to consider the possibility to change the date of Fatherland Defenders’ Day which is marked on 23 February. 23 February is a day of the mass deportation of Chechens and Ingush in 1944. (Gazeta, Novye Izvestia)

15 januari 2007

- Amnesty in Chechnya expires; bodyguard to late Chechen separatist leader surrenders: (i) Dailies point out that the current amnesty in Chechnya formally expires today. According to the National Antiterrorism Committee, more than 540 militants have surrendered since 15 July 2006. (ii) According to media reports, Amirkhan Yandarbiyev, a bodyguard and nephew of slain Chechen separatist leader Zelimkhan Yandarbiyev, and several associates have surrendered to Chechen authorities in an amnesty bid. (Gazeta, Interfax, MT, Novye Izvestia, RG, RIAN, VN)

16 januari 2007

- Amnesty for militants in N. Caucasus: Media report on the expiry yesterday of the amnesty for militants in the Northern Caucasus. Some human rights activists quoted by Kommersant, argued that the current amnesty had been developed entirely in the interests of Chechen PM Ramzan Kadyrov. (Interfax, Kommersant, RG, Vedomosti, VN)

19 januari 2007

- Tatarstan President turns 70: Dailies report about the 70th birthday tomorrow of President of the Republic of Tatarstan, Mintimer Shaimiyev. Izvestia and Rossiyskaya gazeta publish interviews with Shaimiyev. Vremya novostei points to a draft power-sharing treaty between the federal Government and the authorities of Tatarstan, which could create a precedent for other Russian regions, first of all Chechnya. (Izvestia, NG, RG, VN)

- ECHR rules in favour of Chechens: The Moscow Times reports that the European Court of Human Rights yesterday ruled that the military tortured two Chechen brothers in detention in 2000 and awarded each of the plaintiffs $45,280 compensation. (MT)

24 januari 2007

- FM denies Politkovskaya probe theory cited by U.S. reporters: The Russian Foreign Ministry has denied reports of the U.S. based NGO the Committee to Protect Journalists that the Prosecutor General's office is probing Chechen police officers in connection with the murder of investigative reporter Anna Politkovskaya. According to the ministry’s press department the Russian Prosecutor General's Office is checking several theories of the murder, including one related to her work as a journalist. Meanwhile the Kommersant daily found that the Chechen police officers are indeed being probed for in connection with Politkovskaya case. (All media)

25 januari 2007

- Chechen President not to seek a second term: (i) Chechen President Alu Alkhanov yesterday told the press that he does not intend to seek a second term after 2008 when his term of office expires. He neither confirmed nor denied reports claiming that Chechen police officers are being checked as part of the investigation into the murder of journalist Anna Politkovskaya. (ii) Kommersant reports in a front-page article about checks of Chechnya’s ministries and agencies at the order of Chechen PM Ramzan Kadyrov. (Kommersant, RG, Gazeta, Interfax)

26 januari 2007

- Dutch NGO denied registration: The Federal Registration Service (FRS) has denied for a second time registration of the Moscow office of the Dutch human rights group Russian Justice Initiative (RJI). An official at the FRS said there were no political motives behind the FRS decision. RJI provides legal assistance to Chechens who accuse the Russian military of torture and abuse. (Interfax, Kommersant, MT)

- Court rejects first lawsuit from Borozdinovskaya residents: Dailies report that a Moscow district court yesterday rejected one of the 42 lawsuits filed against the Defence Ministry by residents of the Chechen village Borozdinovskaya for a violent raid by the Defence Ministry’s Vostok (‘East’) battalion in June 2005. At least one man was killed and 11 others disappeared in the raid. (Kommersant, RG)

- Envoy says Chechen President’s resignation not discussed: Presidential envoy to the Southern Federal District, Dmitry Kozak, yesterday told the press that the issue of Chechen President Alu Akhanov’s resignation “is not being discussed”. (VN)

30 januari 2007

- HR groups present report on Chechnya: Media cite a report presented yesterday by human rights groups Memorial and Demos on the situation in Chechnya. The report calls the scale of human rights violations in Chechnya “monstrous” and puts the number of missing people since the start of the second anti-terrorist campaign in Chechnya at between 3,000 and 5,000. At the same time, Presidential envoy to the Southern Federal District, Dmitry Kozak, called corruption, and not the crime rate, the main obstacle to economic growth in southern Russia. (Gazeta, MT, Novye Izvestia, RIAN)

- Four servicemen killed in Chechnya: (i) Four servicemen from the Defence Ministry’s Vostok battalion were killed and another one wounded in a clash with militants yesterday in Chechnya’s Gudermes district. One militant was reportedly killed in the ambush. (ii) Nezavisimaya gazeta reports on an operation against militants in Dagestan’s Kizlyar district yesterday. (Interfax, Kommersant, MT, NG, RIAN, VN)

31 januari 2007

- CoE SG proposes to set up forensic laboratory in Chechnya: The Council of Europe’s Secretary General, Terry Davis, has suggested that a modern laboratory for identifying the bodies of those killed in hostilities in Chechnya be set up. (Interfax, Novye Izvestia)

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