No Confirmation of Kadyrov’s Claim that Umarov May Have Been Killed

Publication: Eurasia Daily Monitor Volume: 6 Issue: 211

Investigators' convoy attacked in Ingushetia

Unidentified gunmen shot up the home of a policeman in Ingushetia yesterday (November 15) evening. The incident took place in the city of Nazran when the attackers opened fire on the home of Magomed Yevloev, a State Automobile Inspectorate (GAI) officer, with automatic rifles and also hurled a grenade. No one was hurt in the attack and the home was only slightly damaged (, November 15).

Earlier yesterday, unidentified gunmen fired automatic weapons and grenade launchers at the Kerch-58 post on the northern outskirts of the village of Arshty in Ingushetia’s Sunzha district, manned jointly by Russian interior ministry personnel and internal troops. No one was hurt in the attack, but as investigators were traveling to the scene of the incident in two armored cars several hours later, a roadside bomb went off around 500 meters from the village of Chemulga-1 as the vehicles were passing by. The cars were slightly damaged, but no one traveling in them was injured. A source in the investigative committee said the bomb exploded with the force of five kilograms of TNT and left a crater four meters in diameter and 1.5 meters deep (, November 15).

North Caucasus rebels claimed responsibility for the attack in an item posted to the Kavkaz-Center website on November 15, which called it a “successful operation by the mujahideen.” The posting quoted the “deputy commander of the Sunzha sector of the armed forces of the Caucasus Emirate, emir Arbi” as saying that the initial rebel attack on the post set fire to several trailers in which the “kafirs” –unbelievers– were living, but that there were no exact figures about losses among the servicemen manning the post. Emir Arbi also claimed that the ensuing roadside bombing targeting investigators completely destroyed “one Ural [vehicle] with kafirs” and damaged several others, and that there were dead and wounded among the “occupiers,” although the exact numbers were unknown (, November 15).

On November 14, five people were reportedly hospitalized after an unguided missile exploded on the second floor of the police headquarters in Nazran. The incident occurred after police found five missiles 300 meters from the police headquarters and one detonated on its own as bomb disposal experts were trying to defuse them. While the headquarters had been evacuated and officials initially said no one was hurt in the incident, Russian media later reported that three policemen and two sappers received concussions when the missile detonated. Officials said the discovery of the five missiles averted a terrorist attack, because they had been aimed at the police headquarters building (RIA Novosti, Interfax, ITAR-TASS, November 14).

On November 13, a roadside bomb went off on the Kavkaz federal highway in the village of Barsuki as a convoy of military vehicles was passing. No one was hurt in the blast. That same day, the Federal Security Service (FSB) branch in Ingushetia reported that three rebels were killed by FSB commandos on the Ekhazhevo-Ali-Yurt-Magas road. The FSB’s press service identified two of the slain militants as Vakha Bekov, who it said had been on the wanted list for terrorist activities since 2006 and was close to the late Chechen rebel warlord Shamil Basaev, and Akhmet Aushev, a 19-year-old member of Bekov’s group (, November 13).

On November 12, the imam of Ingushetia’s Sunzha district, Kosum Meiriev, was injured when an explosive device went off under his car in the village of Ordzhonikidzevskaya (, November 12).

Meanwhile, Kavkazsky Uzel on November 14 quoted sources in Chechnya’s security structures as saying they could neither confirm nor deny the claim made the previous day by Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov that rebel leader Dokka Umarov may have been among a group of suspected rebels killed in a helicopter attack (, November 14).

Kadyrov told journalists in Grozny on November 13 that up to 20 militants had been killed in a wooded area near the village of Shalazhi in Chechnya’s Achkhoi-Martan district and that three of Umarov’s closest associates –Islam Uspakhadzhiev, Rustam Akuev and Alkhazur Bashaev– were among them. Kadyrov said many of the bodies of the slain militants had been blown to pieces in a helicopter missile attack, and thus that while it could not be confirmed Umarov had been killed, there were also “no grounds to say that he is alive.” The operation near Shalazhi was commanded by Adam Delimkhanov, the State Duma deputy and Kadyrov’s designated successor (Interfax, ITAR-TASS, November 13).

In Dagestan, unidentified gunmen in the village of Serga-kala fired on the homes of the head of the local criminal investigation department and a district police detective on November 14. No one was hurt in the attacks, but the homes were damaged (, November 14).

On November 13, explosive devices were found and defused on two railway lines in Dagestan. That same day, a bomb blast killed a school teacher in the village of Gubden in Dagestan’s Karabudakhkentsky district, Yelena Triftonigi, and her daughter, at a local cemetery, where they had gone to honor the memory of Triftonigi’s husband, Abdumalik Magomedov, who was killed in October 2008 by militants operating under the command of Magomedali Vagabov. A police source was quoted as saying that Vagabov had repeatedly threatened the relatives of policemen involved in actions against the armed underground and that the cemetery blast may have been an act of revenge by the rebels (, November 13.)