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Chechnya ‘abducts’ around 90 people linked to man accused of burning pro-Kadyrov car

21 May 2024
A still from the video of the car being burnt. Screengrab via 1ADAT

Rights group Memorial has reported that the Chechen authorities have abducted 80–90 people after a man burnt a car decorated with symbols associated with the Kadyrovs.

The group reported that those kidnapped were associated with or related to a man accused of burning a car with the licence plate Dustum — a callsign formerly used by Chechen Head Ramzan Kadyrov and currently used by his son Adam Kadyrov.

1ADAT, a Chechen opposition Telegram channel, shared footage purported to be of the incident on 6 May, showing a man dousing a car with the licence plate ‘Dustum’ and a decal reading ‘K13’ on the side, and then setting it on fire.

K13, or Komanda 13, is also a name associated with Adam Kadyrov.

‘An unknown person in Grozny burned the car of Kadyrov’s sycophant. The inscriptions “K13” and “Dostum” are worn by Kadyrov’s slaves who want to suck up to Adam Kadyrov’, wrote 1ADAT.

The Telegram channel has reported that the man, whom they identified as Sayfa-Islam Elmurzaev, was detained following the incident.

Memorial similarly speculated that the owner of the car likely ‘wanted to demonstrate loyalty to the authorities’. 


The rights organisation conducted surveys among communities where abductions were reported by local Telegram channels and found that Chechen security forces reportedly abducted about 50 of Elmurzaev’s relatives from the village of Starye Atagi in the Urus-Martan district.

The group said that the authorities also kidnapped two men from Gudermes and Grozny for wearing a jacket similar to that worn by Elmurzaev in the Telegram video.

They said that six people were kidnapped from the village of Goiskoe, including a former serviceman who sustained injuries fighting in Ukraine, who was reportedly sent back to the frontline after his kidnapping.

They additionally reported that more than 30 people were kidnapped from Shali, four of whom remained in the Grozny Police Department, while the others were returned to the town.

Of those currently detained from Shali, one person was charged with the illegal possession of weapons, while another person is reportedly being held hostage, with the authorities demanding that their brother, who currently lives abroad, return to Chechnya.

1ADAT stated that at least one of those abducted, a 30-year-old man with disabilities identified by the channel as Abdullah, was killed in custody. They said that the authorities returned the man’s body to his relatives, who stated that he displayed signs of torture.

The man’s family were reportedly told by militia serving under Kadyrov that he died from heart failure.

‘Now the enemies of the Chechen people are controlling the funeral so that no one can photograph or videotape Abdullah’s body’.

Read in Armenian on CivilNet.
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