The killing of mufti Shaaman Madagov from the Vedeno District of Chechnya shocked the entire republic
The mufti was a respectable man who was never afraid of speaking the truth. On the night when a gang of armed criminals rushed into the mountainous settlement of Elistangi, Shaaman Madagov was one of the few villagers who dared to openly protest against the acts of criminals. The gangsters were enraged with the insolence of the mufti and the latter was killed the same night by order of the Arab mercenaries' leader Abu al-Walid.
Recently, an amnestied rebel fighter revealed to Russian authorities the details concerning the tragedy in Elistangy. The man claimed the following.
"On August 29, 2003, the commander told me that at night we would enter the settlement of Elistangy. I could not expect this would end so tragically. I thought the main purpose of entering the settlement was to replenish the food supply and to take medicines as many of the group suffered from tuberculosis. As the hygiene norms were not observed, many people suffered from dermatophyte and three people were suspected of having jaundice.
I had a foreboding when we were told Arabs would go with us. Late in the evening, about 10 p.m., we started moving toward the settlement. The Arabs were riding horses behind us and talking.
When we entered the settlement the situation changed abruptly. We were ordered not to let the villagers out of their houses. I cannot tell what was going on next. I was standing close to my commander Shaaman Atabayev; cries of women and children's weeping were heard everywhere. It was like a nightmare for me.
The Arabs were still sitting on their horses and watched the turmoil with haughtiness. Abu al-Walid was in the center of the horse rank and issued orders by hand waving."
About 50 armed men entered the settlement at night. They encircled Elistangy, broke into houses and took valuable things and food away from people. Islam Musayev testified: "In about an hour after entering the settlement, I saw two men from the group supporting someone under their arms. When they approached I recognized mufti Shaaman. To all appearances, the man was severely beaten as his face was covered with bruises and blood.
Abu Walid shot a glance at the group and then ordered my commander to shoot the mufti and his family. Shaaman Atabayev turned white; he could not believe that he was ordered to raise his hand against a saintly man. To tell the truth, none of Chechens standing by his side expected the situation would take such a turn."
On that night, Shaaman Madagov could not stay calm when he saw the gang was destroying the settlement and killing unarmed people. He called upon the terrorists to leave the villagers alone and go away. The terrorists did not hesitate to raise arms against one of the most respectable man in the republic and of Northern Caucasus. He died as a real Moslem with his head raised proudly.
Islam Musayev testified that when Shaaman Atabayev had recovered from the shock caused by the order, he beckoned three of his men to come up to him; they talked for over half an hour. While explaining something to the men he made gestures and gripped his head.
When the commander stopped talking and directed the steps toward the Arabs, it was already clear that neither he nor his people intended to kill the mufti. He came up to Abu al-Walid and told him something. The situation became heated; the Arab started shouting at Atabayev. He ordered something in the Arab language; then a shot sounded and the mufti fell.
When it was over, one of the Arabs warned Atabayev that he would not get away with the killing and he would have many problems because of it. None of the villagers, with the exception of the mufti risked to show resistance to the criminals.
Shaaman Madagov was indignant at the armed terrorists raging in the settlement. When the mufti demanded that the terrorists must leave the settlement, Abu al-Walid ordered his field commander Shaaman Atabayev to do away with the mufti. For a bit longer than a minute, Atabayev could not recover from the outrageous order; he could not either object or support the commander. He looked at his people considering what decision he must take. The commander understood that disagreeing with Abu al-Walid might cause his own death, but at the same time he realized that killing of an Islamic mufti, one of the most respectable men, was a greatest sin and disgrace.
When the terrorists returned to base, Shamil Basayev was already informed of the events that occurred in Elistangy. Shamil and Shaaman Atabayev retired and had a long conversation about the conflict with the Arabs. Shamil Basayev was outraged by the fact that Atabayev doubted the correctness of al-Walid's order and hesitated to execute it.
Shamil Basayev ordered the execution of Shaaman Atabayev. To please the Arab mercenaries, the actual masters of all Chechen terrorists, Shamil Basayev executed his field commander, the man with whom he shared his daily bread.
The common truth says that no matter how long a man is being deceived, he will finally see the light. Now, Chechnya is experiencing a period when Chechens are recovering from the frenzy caused by the Wakhabism ideas. But before the whole of the republic recovers from the frenzy, many of innocent people may fall victim.
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