Members of criminal armed units in Chechnya must disarm in three days. Such was the ultimatum posed by the first Vice Prime Minister of the Republic of Chechnya, head of president's security service Ramzan Kadyrov, the youngest son of the assassinated president of Chechnya Akhmad Kadyrov.
Ramzan Kadyrov demanded militants to disarm and surrender at their own will. “Otherwise, you will all be destroyed,” stated he.
According to Kadyrov, amnesty for the militants has been effective for too long. “You have been given enough time to come to the law enforcement officials, lay down your weapons and continue living in peace. If you chose to refuse, then your choice is well-thought-out and there is no other way but to destroy you,” warned he.
Kadyrov made this announcement during his meeting with commanders presidential security services in Gudermes. It was aired on local federal channel Monday night.
Ramzan Kadyrov suggested the commanders to lead “the most ruthless and uncompromised fight with those who, once the three-day ultimatum expires, will continue their illegal activities and will refuse to leave criminal gangs.”
“We cannot tolerate the terror against peaceful population any longer. We can no longer witness deaths common people. This cannot last for eternity,” said Ramzan Kadyrov.
Kadyrov did not specify how exactly he intends to make the militants aware of the ultimatum, since there are no TV sets in the mountains!
Even leaders of militant units did not hear anything about the ultimatum. “I do not watch local television, that’s is why I am completely unaware of what Kadyrov has said,” stated assistant director of Russian Federal Services regarding Chechen issues Alexander Popov in his interview to “Kommersant.” He also added that it is absolutely unreal to fulfill the ultimatum. “I'd say, it is unreal that in three days all militants will surrender. Most likely, Ramzan knows what he is talking about.”
This is not the first case in the second war campaign when Chechen government officials pose ultimatum to militants. Usually, it was done in order to protect peaceful population and save their homes. The most well-known case took place in March of 2000, when militants of Ruslan Gelaev occupied Komsomolsky settlement in Urus-Martanovsky region. Back then, the militants ignored the ultimatum and feds shot down several hundreds of militants right in front of the village residents.
Representatives of Chechen separatists called Kadyrov’s statement as a mere PR move before the upcoming presidential elections. “If it is that easy to get things over with the militants, then why do federal services have been unable to do anything for five years? Ramzan simply wants to show off, to demonstrate his opulence. Kadyrov’s team is simply getting ready for the elections,” stated spokesman of Ichkeria’s president Usman Ferzauli to “Kommersant” yesterday.
Fight for the presidential post in Chechnya will be much fiercer than last year. Back then, open support of the Moscow's Kremlin did not leave Akhmad Kadyrov’s opponents any chances for victory. This time, most likely, the same people will compete for the post. Many would like to see Ramzan Kadyrov, the son of the former president of Chechnya Akhmad Kadyrov who had been assassinated in Grozny on May 9th, 2004. However, Ramzan has not reached 30 yet, the appropriate age to qualify for presidency.
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