Thursday, December 27, 2018

Moscow to Expand Russian Military Presence in Ingushetia

Paul Goble

            Staunton, December 27 – Moscow plans to put a new motorized rifle division in Ingushetia in the coming months and has asked republic head Yunus-Bek Yevkurov to provide 9,000 hectares of land for its base. Col.Gen. Aleksandr. Dvornikov told Yevkurov he would like it to be in the Sunzhen district of Ingushetia near the republic’s border with Chechnya.

            The republic’s independent news agency,, which has a good track record of reporting developments in Ingushetia before anyone else has obtained a copy of this message as received by Yevkurov and has posted a photostat of it on its website (

            Dvornikov did not link this request which is dated December 18 to the tensions between Ingushetia and Chechnya over the September 26 border accord but instead cast it as part of a general relocation of forces in the North Caucasus. But it is impossible to avoid the conclusion that Moscow wants to beef up its presence there because of those tensions.

            Three other developments in the last 24 hours about the conflict over the border accord include:

·         The Agora Human Rights Group has announced that it will organize an appeal of the Russian Constitutional Court’s decision on the Chechen-Ingush border accord to the European Court of Human Rights and also a second appeal on the fines levied against those Ingush who protested the accord and that decision (

·         The Coordinating Center of Muslims of the North Caucasus has invited the mufti of Ingushetia to a meeting on January 12 to discuss what a shariat court may and may not decide. The Ingush mufti favors having such a court rule on the border accord; the Coordinating Center says that is impermissible now that the Russian court has ruled (

·         The Union of Teips of Ingushetia which favors the use of a shariat court to rule on the border accord has told the republic’s alims that their failure to participate in discussions about the organization of such court sessions undermines their authority among the population (

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