DFWatch (8–14 August 2015)


According to the Russian Investigative Committee, leader of the Caucasian Emirate, Magomed Suleymanov (A.K.A. Abu Usman Gimrinskiy), head of the Daghestani insurgency, Kamil Saidov (A.K.A. Said Kharakanskiy), along with two more fighters were killed by Russian security forces in the Untsukul region during a special operation which started on 10 August. The on-going operation is currently focused near the village of Gimry, locals say.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.

Inhabitant of Makhachkala Arsen Esedov was found guilty with ‘justifying terrorism and calling to conduct terrorist activities’ online and sentenced to 2 years and 6 months in prison. Esedov published comments under another user’s status in the popular Russian social network Odnoklassniki, in which, investigators state, he ‘justified terrorist tactics and showed connections to a religion-based ideology.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru. 

Mayor of Derbent, Imam Yaraliyev, was dismissed after a meeting between president Vladimir Putin and Daghestani president, Ramazan Abdulatipov. Yaraliyev was accused earlier this year with illegal disposal of land plots in the city, although the case was later dropped. The dismissal is another event in the series of purges in Daghestan’s political circles. Yaraliyev was replaced with another ethnic Lezgi Gadzhimet Safaraliyev.

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


President Ramzan Kadyrov announced that ‘his time in politics was over’ and that he had repeatedly asked the authorities in Moscow to be dismissed from his post. According to Kadyrov, young generation should take over in the Chechen Republic in order to handle the economic issues in the region effectively. At the same time he called the Russian government for changing its foreign policy orientation to cooperation with the Arab states which ‘won’t sell out Moscow like the West did’.

Based on reporting by ria.ru and rusdialog.ru.


Ingushetia and a major international company РricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) signed a cooperation agreement. The aim of the agreement is to attract more foreign investment in the republic. The investments are expected to come from China and Turkey.

Based on reporting by onkavkaz.com.


Rauf Arashukov was dismissed as the head of Khabez region of Karachay–Circassia. He is a member of an influential Circassian family and a close friend of Ramzan Kadyrov. While some connect Arashukov’s dismissal with his political ambitions, he himself denies speculations that he was planning to run for president of the republic. According to other speculations, Arashukov was planning to run to senate, but in order to do it he needs to be a member of the parliament or a member of a regional council.

Based on reporting by kavpolit.com and onkavkaz.com.


Circassian organisations once again stalled the bill on creation of ‘national militias’ in the republic in fear of ethnic clashes. Cossack militias already exist in the Krasnodar Krai and many Circassians fear that such a bill will be used exclusively by Cossack nationalist as a means to police non-ethnic Russians.

Based on reporting by onkavkaz.com.

Former dean of the State University of Technology in Maykop, Khazret Blyagoz, was officially accused of embezzling over 55 million roubles ($850,000), which was allocated to the university for construction works. Three employees of construction companies involved in the contract are also accused with involvement in the embezzlement scheme. Blyagoz was dismissed from his post in late 2012 without giving reasons. He can face up to ten years in prison.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.

Krasnodar Krai

A large forest fire broke out near the city of Gelendzhik. The fire consumed up to 60 hectares of forest. According to organisation Ecological Watch in the North Caucasus, the forest was set on fire intentionally in order to free up land for construction of a luxury residential complex. The forest on this particular place at the Black Sea coast is notable for being the only place the species Pitsunda pine can be found.

Based on reporting by kavkaz-uzel.ru.