DFWatch – (1–7 August 2015)


Two men were killed by security forces in Suleyman Stalskiy region in the south of Daghestan on 6 August. According to the official version, the men refused to stop their car, after which they opened fire to the police.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru and kavpolit.com. 

The personal shuffles and arrests in the circle of Sagid Murtazaliyev, the head of the Daghestani branch of the Russian Pension Fund, have caused a stir in the republic’s clan and ethnicity-defined politics. Murtazaliyev and his supporters are mostly ethnic Avars who are the largest group in the republic and are widely considered to hold the biggest share of political power. Kumyks, the second largest ethnic group, have used the recent events to voice demands for an ethnically Kumyk mayor of Makhachkala. Although the election of city’s mayor is planned for 15 September, Kumyk activists are aware that the voting outcome is dependent on the will of the incumbent president Ramazan Abdulatipov and the Kremlin.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.


The head of Kizilyurt region Bagautdin Adzhamatov as well as two regional officials were arrested under charges of corruption. This follows similar arrests of the head and other officials from Tarumovka region as well as the head of Buynaksk region Daniyal Shikhsaidov. President Ramazan Abdulatipov referred to the arrests as ‘cleaning up the government’.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.

A video showing a Chechen policeman defecating on a beach in Makhachkala caused uproar in local social networks. The fact that the video was shot and uploaded by two Daghestani policeman sheds some light on the long-lasting conflict between the Daghestani and Chechen security structures. Chairman of the Independent Trade Union of the Interior and the Prosecutor’s Office of Daghestan Magomed Shamilov argues that the roots of the conflict include an incident where a couple of years ago Ramzan Kadyrov’s sister was stopped in Daghestan by police of Khasavyurt, after which Kadyrov showed up in Khasavyurt personally and scolded local security forces. There have also been minor tensions between the two groups at the border between the two republics.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.

Almost 33,000 inhabitants of Kizlyar region signed the petition urging president Vladimir Putin to launch the investigation against Sagid Murtazaliyev and a head of Kizlyar region Andrey Vinogradov under personal control. The head of the Sagid Murtazaliyev Charity Fund, Akhmedpasha Amirilayev, announced that the organisation would ask the local authorities to issue a permission to organise a demonstration is support of Murtazaliyev and Vinogradov.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.


On 1 August members of the NGO Committee against Torture announced they dissolved the organisation, following the NGO’s inclusion in the list of ‘foreign agents’ in January and having their Grozny office vandalised by unknown perpetrators in June. As of 3 August, the organisation’s work has been carried out by the umbrella NGO Committee for the Prevention of Torture. The new structure consists of multiple NGOs carrying out different aspects of the previous organisation’s work in such a way that it’s not fully classified as a ‘foreign agent’ again.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.


The National Antiterrorist Committee of Russia announced that eight fighters affiliated with the Islamic State were killed near the village of Dattykh in Sunzha region of Ingushetia at the border with Chechnya on 2 August. All eight insurgents were residents of Chechnya, including Adam Tagilov, one of the authors of the raid on Grozny in December 2014. The security structures claim that the group was subordinated to Aslan Byutukayev, also known as Abubakar or Amir Hamzat, who pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in June. The security forces spent the following days searching for other insurgents who might have escaped the confrontation at the border of Ingushetia and Chechnya — to no result.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.

One-person demonstrations in support of Khamzat Chumakov, the imam of mosque in Nasyr-Kort, took place in various places in the centre of Nazran and Magas. A larger demonstration took place in front of the mosque itself. The demonstrators accused the ‘provocateurs’ of destabilising the situation in Ingushetia arguing that the imam helps to fight corruption and draws youth away from extremism and terrorism. The controversy around Khamzat Chumakov is connected to the fact that some of his actions as imam are considered to be based in the tradition of Salafism as opposed to Sufism, which is the ‘official’ religious tradition in Ingushetia supported by the government. President Yunus-bek Yevkurov accuses Chumakov of ‘politicking’.

Based on reporting by galgayche.org and mehkkhel.org.

North Ossetia–Alania

Tamerlan Aguzarov, acting head of North Ossetia, is the favourite to become the new head of the republic. On 13 September the local parliament will choose the new president from among the three candidates previously approved by president Vladimir Putin. Aguzarov is supported by all local parties, i.e. United Russia, the Communist Party, Fair Russia and the Liberal Democratic Party, except Patriots of Russia party. The previous president Taymuraz Mamsurov was one of the few heads of the North Caucasian republics to serve two full terms.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.


Six suspected insurgents will killed by security forces on 3 August in Nalchik. This marks the second major ‘anti-terrorist operation’ in Kabarda Balkaria in past two weeks.

Based on reporting by kbrria.ru.

On 6 August a man was killed by security forces in the outskirts of Nalchik. According to the official information, the man initiated an exchange of gunfire with the police after he noticed he was being followed. Local security structures identified the man as Azamat Indreyev and claimed he was a recruiter for the Islamic State. Website IslamDin affiliated with the Caucasian Emirate claims that Indreyev was kidnapped by security forces, killed, and his body was subsequently placed at the crime scene.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru and islamdin.com.

Activists of political organisation Molodezhnoye Yabloko organised a series of one-person demonstrations in front of the General Prosecutor’s Office and the Investigative Committee of Russia in Moscow demanding investigation of the death of journalist and activist Timur Kuashev in Nalchik on 1 August 2014. There are reports that indicate that Kuashev could have been poisoned.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.

The Ministry of Internal Affairs of Kabarda–Balkaria issued arrest warrants for 34 suspected fighters who committed ‘crimes of a terrorist character’. The pictures of the men were published in newspaper Kabardino-Balkarskaya pravda. The men are residents of all regions of the republic. The list includes six men wanted for their connection to the Nalchik raid in October 2005 and Zalim Shebzukhov, former leader of the subdivision of the Caucasian Emirate known as the Vilayyat of Kabarda, Balkaria, and Karachay, who switched his allegiance to the Islamic State.

Based on reporting by kbrinfo.ru and kavkaz-uzel.ru.

Prepared by DominiK K. Cagara