Monday, November 5, 2018

Ingush Congress Marks Culmination of Nation-Building Process, Yevloyev Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, November 4 – The most important consequence of the convention of the Congress of the Ingush People is the completion of the nation-building process, Akhmed Yevloyev, with the formation of a single nation not limited by its ties with other Vaynakhs (the Chechens) or riven internally by the traditional clans (taips) or religious communities.

            The Ingush commentator draws that conclusion on the basis of a series of interviews he made with three experts on the republic and its people, all of whom see the congress as a fundamental turning point in the national life of the Ingush (

                Barakh Chemurziyev, a legal specialist with the Defense of Ingushetia Social Movement, says that “the main goal” of the demonstrations and the congress was “the consolidation of the people and the development of a single conception and strategy for further actions.”

            Tanzila Chabiyeva, a Caucasus specialist at the Moscow Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, says that while it is difficult to predict what will happen next, it is already obvious that “the Ingush people has come together in the struggle for the territorial integrity of its republic, for its lawful rights, by means of democratic methods.”

            It is also “obvious,” she continues, that “not one of the sides expected” such an outcome when the protests began.  The Ingush are now united as a nation for the first time as a result of the developments of the last three weeks and view what is taking place as “a reflection of a new national idea.”

            And Anzhela Matiyeva, a member of the Ingush Committee for National Unity, says that “the unity of the people displaced in the course of the two weeks of meetings and at the Congress demonstrates that civil society in the republic has matured and achieved such a level as to be the greatest achievement.”

            “Every resident of the Republic of Ingushetia is pleased by the unity and the presence of professionals who can stand up in defense of their people,” she says.

            Some might be tempted to dismiss these remarks as entirely self-interested, but they capture a development that many of the smaller events of the last month may have obscured. The Ingush nation is not what it was, a collection of Vaynakhs on a particular territory, but rather a nation.

            And more than that, a nation that has already forced the authorities to listen to it and take it seriously, even if the nation has not yet taken power itself.  

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