The women of Kvankhidatli, a village in the mountains of south-west Daghestan, are known as the people who mine salt. The women recall gathering sand by hand to dissolve the salt since the beginning of the 20th century but say the tradition is now dying out. [Read more…]
‘A woman should know her place. A woman should show love to us all. A woman is property, and she belongs to a man. If a woman walks around naked, or if she does not behave properly, she answers to her husband, her father, and her brother. According to our customs, if a woman goes out too freely, her relatives will kill her… That’s how it happens. A brother kills his sister, a husband kills his wife… But as President, I cannot allow them to be killed. So, women shouldn’t wear shorts.’ [Read more…]
‘I was fourteen when I was kidnapped. I lived in a village with my parents, two brothers and my elder sister. I was a teenager by then, but mentally still a child. I liked playing naughty games: climbing trees, jumping from heights, fighting devilishly.’ [Read more…]
When Leyla decided to foster four sisters from a shelter in the southeastern Russian city of Samara, she rented a flat with four rooms so there was enough space for everyone. The family is living here temporarily, in a normal apartment in a five-storey building in Daghestan’s capital, Makhachkala. You can easily tell it’s temporary, as there are huge bags piled up in one of the rooms. Everyone has their own bag. They serve as both wardrobe and nightstand — everything is in them. [Read more…]
At the end of July, Chechen authorities reported on the progress of the Commission on the Reunification of Broken Families. They said that ‘in a short time’ they had managed to reunite 240 divorced couples. However, some experts say that such a commission could only work with the help of professional psychologists and NGOs, to get to the real root of family conflicts. [Read more…]
Daptar columnist Zaira Abdullayeva talks about the everyday reality of domestic violence in Daghestan
…He started to beat her on the very first day, even on the first night. He hit her in the face. For what or why — she didn’t ask. She never asked. Later, he stopped beating her face, only other parts of her body. ‘His friends in law enforcement taught him this’, Izha says. She talks about her late husband with an indifferent smile. Very often there were no bruises, but her eyes grew dark. [Read more…]
The protracted legal proceedings surrounding the case of Elizaveta Aliyeva’s kidnapping are nearing their completion. The prosecution has requested six years in a maximum-security prison for the defendant. Daptar revisited the story to report on the trial.