Russian media reports mass execution of Chechen residents without trial

In Chechnya on the night of 26 January 2017 there was supposedly a mass extrajudicial execution of 27 people, reports  Novaya Gazeta with reference to two sources, one in the office of the Russian Investigative Committee for Chechnya, and another in the republic’s administration.

Novaya Gazeta does not know what the executed people were suspected of or the basis of their arrest.

According to the publication’s information, all 27 of the victims were arrested in January during the mass arrests in several regions of Chechnya which began after December 17, 2016. The arrests did not follow official protocols, and the charges were not announced. Instead, according to Novaya Gazeta, the detainees were placed in “the basements and storage rooms of police departments”.

The article’s source in the Chechen Ministry of Interior Affairs provided a list of the republic’s inhabitants who were arrested in January. According to the list, the most people were arrested in the Shali locality – 28 people. Novaya Gazeta established their address, but was unable to learn anything else about their fate.

“All attempts to learn something about the fate of these people have been met with the incredible fear of our interlocutors. One of them, an employee of the Shali city administration, in a panic refused to become acquainted with the surnames of the Shali residents which we established, and said: Everyone who was arrested in Shali in January is no more. Don’t look,” Novaya Gazeta reported.

Later, Jambulat Umarov, Chechen minister of national policy, foreign relations, press and information, told RIA Novosti that Novaya Gazeta’s information on the execution of 27 people in January 2017 is yet another piece of disinformation directed against the Chechen republic.
“This is yet another piece of disinformation directed against the Chechen Republic. I am absolutely convinced of it,” Umarov said.

He emphasized that the publication’s material on the execution is not backed by any evidence, and has a political nature.

In October 2016, Ramzan Kadyrov proposed that law enforcement officials shoot violators of the peace in Chechnya.

  Chechnya, mass execution