Staunton, February 6 – Until the protests began over the border accord with Chechnya and the repressions followed, Ingushetia had the reputation as being the North Caucasus republic that had made the most progress from a traditional society to a modern civic one, but that has now changed.
One measure of this is the way in which the authorities have treated the Internet, something many Ingush have come to rely upon. Up to the end of 2018, Magas seldom interfered as much with Internet access as did the governments of the neighboring republics of Chechnya and North Ossetia.
But now, according to the Agora media rights group, that has changed and changed dramatically. In 2019, it says, the authorities in Ingushetia interfered one way or another with Internet access 264 times compared to the actions of the republic’s neighbors. The Chechen powers did so 23 times; and the North Ossetian 25 times (fortanga.org/2020/02/ingushetiya-popala-v-krasnuyu-zonu-svobody-interneta/).
Meanwhile, there were two other Ingushetia protest developments. First, more details became available on detentions two days ago. Five people remain under arrest, not the single one reported earlier. Among the five is blogger Isropil Nalgiyev who has attracted attention across Russia for his coverage of the protests (fortanga.org/2020/02/novye-aresty-aktivistov-protesta-v-ingushetii-zaderzhan-bloger-isropil-nalgiev/
the leaders of Ingush families have asked that officials seek to oust North Ossetian activist Vladimir Lagkuyev for his suggestion that any change in the Russian Constitution making it easier for deported people not only to return home but recover land their nation had earlier be rejected (interfax-russia.ru/South/news.asp?sec=1671&id=1102661).
That is a neuralgic issue for both republics as North Ossetia retains land that had belonged to Ingushetia before the deportation, an area known as the Prigorodny district over which the two republics fought a war in the early 1990s and whose displaced persons have become active in Ingushetia over the last several months.