On 1 April, the Russian Investigative Committee in Chechnya issued an arrest warrant for businessman Isa Yamadayev for attempted murder. According to investigators, Yamadayev was behind the May 2016 attempt to assassinate Chechen Head Ramzan Kadyrov, in the Nozhay-Yurt District of Chechnya. Investigators claim that the assassination attempt was part of a blood feud, in revenge for the murders of two of his brothers — Sulim and Ruslan Yamadayev.
According to Russian news agency Rosbalt, in late March, Chechen investigators conducted a search of a Moscow flat owned by Yamadayev. According to sources in Chechnya’s authorities, the prosecution’s case is based on the testimony of former members of the now defunct Vostok special forces battalion, which was commanded by Sulim Yamadayev.
In late 2016, the media reported that the assassination attempt on Kadyrov had been solved. It was reported that close and distant relatives of Kadyrov were involved, though the authorities denied this. In March 2017, the military assistant to the head of Chechnya, Daniil Martynov, who is considered to be a close associate to Kadyrov, confirmed that an assassination attempt was indeed being prepared, and that the security service, which he overseed, had managed to foil it.
The Yamadayev brothers were once an influential family in Chechnya. All five brothers took part in the First Chechen War, fighting against the Russian military. At the beginning of the Second Chechen War, the Yamadayevs switched sides and fought against their former comrades-in-arms on the side of Russia. The Yamadayev family is the only one in Chechnya in which three members have been declared ‘Heroes of Russia’. Only two of the brothers are still alive — Isa and Badruddi; the other three have all died violent deaths. In 2009, Sulim Yamadayev was murdered in Dubai; in 2008, Ruslan Yamadayev was assassinated in the centre of Moscow; while Dzhabrail Yamadayev died in an explosion of a homemade bomb in his house back in the early 2000s, during the Second Chechen War.