Has the West forgotten about Chechnya?
PODCAST: Ramzan Kadyrov’s reign in Chechnya has cast a wave of fear and oppression across this Russian republic. What does that mean for the people living there, and for those who have fled the region in fear? And why don’t we talk more about this in the West?
Since the 1990s, Chechnya, the Russian republic in the North Caucasus, has been the site of one of the deadliest and most long-lasting conflicts in Europe, a source of regional and global terrorism, and an area of many serious violations of human rights.
But it is not only in the Chechnya that people feel unsafe. On August 23 this year, former Chechen military commander Zelimkhan Khangoshvili died after being shot twice in the head in broad daylight in the Kleiner Tiergarten Park in Berlin. This is not the first time an emigrant, dissident or alleged terrorist from Chechnya has been killed or disappeared, and it has been speculated that it was either the Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov or the Russian security services that were behind the assassination of Khangoshvili.
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In this podcast NUPI Senior Researcher Julie Wilhelmsen talks with Ekaterina Sokirianskaia. Together, they examine the situation in Chechnya today, and for Chechens who have left of the republic. They also question why Western media have not been more concerned with grave violations of human rights such as those seen in Chechnya.
Ekaterina Sokirianskaia is the founder and director of the Conflict Analysis and Prevention Center. From 2011 to 2017, she was Project Director for Russia and the North Caucasus at the International Crisis Group, where she led the organization's research and consultancy work in the region. Sokirianskaia is a highly experienced analyst focusing on developments in the North Caucasus. Her most recent project is a book on the situation in the region.