Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Kalimatov’s Failure to Reach Out to Society or Prepare for Pandemic to Blame for Losses, Ingush People and Experts Say

Paul Goble

            Staunton, May 12 – Ingushetia, the smallest republic in the North Caucasus, has suffered disproportionately more infections and deaths during the pandemic than its neighbors, a pattern that the Ingush people and Ingush experts blame of republic head Makhmud-Ali Kalimatov’s failure to reach out to society and otherwise prepared for the pandemic.

            Over the last 24 hours, yet another Ingush resident died from the coronavirus, as a result of which the republic now has almost exactly one-third of all the deaths in the North Caucasus, 30 out of 91, despite representing only five percent of the total population of the region (

            A recent poll in the republic found that not only do residents believe that there have been even more deaths than officials have reported but that Kalimatov has made the situation worse by failing  to work with social organizations like the muftiate in order to promote the self-isolation program (на-бирже-губернаторов-рейтинг-м-а-ка/).

            Ingush experts agree. They say that had Kalimatov worked with the religious leaders rather than continuing to refuse to have anything to do with them, they would have been more successful in keeping Muslims from gathering for marriages and funerals and the virus would not have spread as widely ( and

            Kalimatov continues to avoid contact with the population and hew closely to the Kremlin line, saying he will gradually end the self-isolation regime in the hopes of ending it on June 1 and has asked his government to develop a staged plan for that ( and

            In happier news, Ingush detainee Zarifa Sautiyeva finished second (to Viktor Ivlev) among 90,000 voters who took part in a poll organized by Novaya gazeta. She received 30.65 percent of the votes; he, 42.9. No one else received as many as 12 percent. The winner will be chosen by a jury from among the top finishers (

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