Speculation Continues Over Who Killed Kadyrov

Publication: North Caucasus Weekly Volume: 5 Issue: 20

Was Akhmad Kadyrov led to his assassination by a traitor within his own inner circle? Among the many theories now competing for attention is that of Sergei Goncharov, head of the association of veterans of the “Alpha” elite commando unit. He told the pro-Kremlin website Utro.ru in an interview published on May 17 that Kadryov had not wanted to visit Grozny’s “Dinamo” stadium on the day of the fatal explosion, and had allowed himself to be persuaded only at the last minute. “He made his decision under the influence of his inner circle, and only that circle knew of his intentions…Thus I strongly believe that this tragedy could not have taken place without an act of betrayal within Kadyrov’s own team.”

Whether or not such an act of betrayal took place, in some ways the security around Akhmad Kadyrov seems to have been surprisingly slipshod. Radio Liberty reported on May 14 that yet another unexploded bomb had been found in the “Dinamo” stadium on May 13, leading deputy general prosecutor Sergei Fridinsky to take note of the security team’s “lack of professionalism.” Since Ramzan Kadyrov was in charge of his father’s security, Fridinsky’s stress on this point will have the effect of helping the young Kadyrov’s rivals in the race for the Chechen presidency.