Publication: North Caucasus Weekly Volume: 4 Issue: 35

Just before Vladimir Putin’s and Akhmad Kadyrov’s recent visit to the United States, the independent New York-based monitoring organization Human Rights Watch released a twenty-eight-page report on “Russian Abuses in Ingushetia.” The report, based largely on face-to-face interviews, provides fresh details about seven separate “zachistki” that took place in June in villages and camps housing Chechen refugees in Ingushetia.

The Human Rights Watch researchers found that these security sweeps followed a pattern long familiar in Chechnya itself: “Large groups of armed personnel, often arriving on armored personnel carriers, would surround a settlement and conduct sweeps or random checks at peoples’ homes. In those security operations, at least eighteen people were arbitrarily detained; most of whom were not released until several days or weeks later, without ever receiving an explanation of the grounds for their detention. In other operations, federal forces appear to be responsible for killing one civilian and seriously injuring two others.”

The full text of the twenty-eight-page report is available from the Human Rights Watch website, https://www.hrw.org.