Saturday, April 20, 2019

Grozny Introduces Another Complication in Chechen-Ingushetia Border Case

Paul Goble

            Staunton, April 20 – In attempting to solidify Chechnya’s claims to the Ingush land Yunus-Bek Yevkurov agreed to transfer to Grozny’s control and to undercut the Ingush opposition movement, Magomed Daudov has made a statement that has the potential to create serious problems for Chechnya and for Moscow.

            Earlier this week, the speaker of the Chechen parliament said that Ruslan Aushev, the former head of Ingushetia, should testify to the fact that he reached an agreement with Ichkeria President Dzhokhar Dudayev in 1991 about the border between the two republics (

            While such testimony might appear to strengthen Chechnya’s position in that Daudov suggests that the transfer arranged last year conformed to that earlier accord, it may have exactly the opposite effect. That is because the Russian Constitutional Court dismissed the suit against the September 26 Yevkurov-Kadyrov accord precisely because it said there was no prior agreement on the border.

            If there had been, then it would have been the case that the constitutional requirement for a referendum and for federal approval would kick in. But since there was no such agreement in place, there was no need for either.  But if there was as Daudov certainly is suggesting, then the Ingush could go back to the Russian courts for a new hearing.

            Even if they choose not to do that, this latest Chechen declaration will muddy the waters and likely convince the Ingush opposition that there is good reason for them to pursue their cause because now even the Chechens appear to be admitting to a situation that would make the opposition’s demand for a referendum more or less irrefutable.

                Meanwhile there were three other developments involving Ingushetia and the opposition to the border accord and to Yevkurov personally:

·         After refusing to identify their representatives at the time of the detention of Malsag Uzhakov, the president of the Council of Teips of Ingushetia, or saying where he had been taken, officials finally acknowledged he was in an isolator in Nalchik. His attorney is worried because Uzhakov has  not had his medicines for 24 hours (  and

·         Yevkurov’s regime continues to detain ever more Ingush protesters. The number behind bars has risen to the point that the Ingush Committee for National Unity has set up a special service to provide legal assistance to those under arrest ( and

·         Moscow officials, citing Easter crowds, have refused a request by the Ingush community of the Russian capital to hold a demonstration. The community’s lawyer says that it will apply again for permission after the holiday (

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