Monday, July 20, 2020

Ingush Send Telegrams to Imprisoned Activists from Home Computers, Undercutting Official Efforts to Isolate Them

Paul Goble

            Staunton, July 19 – Since Magas and Moscow began to arrest Ingush activists at the end of 2018, the authorities have sought to isolate the detainees by moving them around, often beyond the borders of the Ingush Republic, in the hopes of breaking their spirits and causing them to capitulate.

            Ingush society responded by organizing a program which delivered medical and personal hygiene goods on a regular basis and by ensuring that when friends and relatives did know in advance about a hearing or trial, they would make every effort to be present. The powers responded by banning the charitable group and not informing even lawyers about hearing times.

            Now, the Ingush nation has found a new way to signal their support for those behind bars: telegrams that they can send to the more than 30 Ingush protest leaders still in detention and they can do so without going to the post office but do so directly from their own computers at home.

            Magomed Mutsolgov, the activist leader of the MASHR human rights group, described to the Kavkaz-Uzel news agency how pleased he was when he found out about this possibility and that yesterday on the birthday of Bagaudin Khautiyev, one of the detainees, he used his own computer to send him birthday greetings (

            Whether jailors reporting to Moscow or Magas will deliver these messages and whether either or both will move to close this channel of hope remains to be seen; but it is yet another indication of the creative ways that Ingush activists continue to seek all legal means to support their causes and those who are already being punished for doing the same. 

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