Staunton, July 13 – Widespread hopes that the replacement of Yunus-Bek Yevkurov by Makhmud-Ali Kalimatov as head of Ingushetia would lead to a reduction or even an end to repression in that North Caucasus republic were dashed over the last 24 hours by the arrest of two prominent figures, a crusading journalist and a prominent woman activist.
Among those caught up in this sweep was Rashid Maysigov, the head of the Fortanga telegram channel who was accused of having large quantities of drugs in his possession, drugs that his supporters say were planted by the authorities. His Internet outlet has been one of the most important chroniclers of repressions in Ingushetia (kavkazr.com/a/30053770.html).
Also arrested was Zarifa Sautiyeva, an Ingush activist and employee of the Memorial Complex of Victims of Repression in Manas, who was accused of using force against the siloviki. This is the first time a woman has been detained since the current unrest began (novayagazeta.ru/news/2019/07/13/153295-siloviki-zaderzhali-sotrudnitsu-ingushskogo-muzeya-repressiy-po-delu-o-primenenii-nasiliya-k-politseyskim).
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of Kabardino-Balkaria where many Ingush prisoners are being kept rejected an appeal by Malsa Uzhakhov, the head of the Union of Teips of the Ingush People, who had sought a reduction in the period of his detention on charges that he was behind the disorders and attacks on siloviki (kavkaz-uzel.eu/articles/337807/
Angela Matiyeva, a representative of the Ingush Committee of National Unity, says that these latest actions coming on top of others will have a serious and negative impact on Russia’s image abroad. If the authorities continue as they are, that image will only be further blackened, she argues (zamanho.com/?p=10481).
But perhaps the most important comment on these latest developments in Ingushetia came from Denis Sokolov, a specialist on the Caucasus and head of the RAMCOR Research Center. He argues in a commentary posted on Zamanho that the latest actions appear to be “ritual detentions,” and that allows for “certain conclusions” (zamanho.com/?p=10543
kavkaz-uzel.eu/articles/337766/). And on the other, investigators say they have evidence of systematic beatings of the Ingush girl now in Moscow hospital (kavkaz-uzel.eu/articles/337788/ and