Chechnya’s Ramzan Kadyrov has posted a video showing his son beating Nikita Zhuravel, who is suspected of burning a Quran in Volgograd. Zhuravel had his case transferred to Chechnya in May.
Zhuravel was charged in May for ‘insulting the religious feelings of believers’ after being accused of burning the Quran near a mosque in Volgograd on video.
Russia’s Investigative Committee stated that Zhuravel had burnt the Quran ‘at the direction of the special services of Ukraine for a reward of ₽10,000 ($120)’.
He had his case transferred to Chechnya for investigation based on ‘numerous appeals from residents of the Chechen Republic with a request to recognise them as victims’.
Kadyrov posted a video on his Telegram channel of his son, Adam Kadyrov, beating Zhuravel, confirming reports that this had taken place.
‘The internet is still arguing about whether Adam Kadyrov beat Nikita Zhuravel, an accomplice of the Ukrainian Special Services. Is this true or false?’, read Kadyrov’s post. ‘He beat him, and he did the right thing’.
The seven-second video shows 15-year-old Adam Kadyrov violently punching and kicking Zhuravel.
‘I believe that anyone who encroaches on any holy scripture, including demonstratively burning it, thereby offending tens of millions of citizens of our great country, must suffer severe punishment’, wrote Kadyrov.
Reports of the beating emerged in August after Zhuravel sent a letter to Russia’s Commissioner for Human Rights, Tatyana Moskalkova, stating that he was beaten by Adam Kadyrov in his cell.
His appeal was transferred for verification to Chechnya’s Human Rights Defender, Manusr Soltayev, who stated in mid-August that his office was looking into Zhuravel’s claims.
Russia’s Human Rights Defender, Tatyana Moskalkova, appeared to criticise Kadyrov for his treatment of Zhuravel, stating that the detained should be ‘kept in a pre-trial detention centre according to the rules established by law’.
Russia’s Presidential Human Rights Council Chair, Valery Fadeyev, similarly stated of Zhuravel’s beating that ‘rules’ must be observed in the handling of detainees. He did not address the video shared by Kadyrov.
However, he reaffirmed that burning the Quran was a ‘serious crime’ that should be punished by law.
‘Such provocations are unacceptable in a multi-religious country’, said Fadeyev.
Grozny backs Adam Kadyrov
Adam Delimkhanov, a State Duma deputy, praised Adam Kadyrov’s actions as ‘correct and fair’ while referring to Zhuravel as a ‘vile scumbag and an accomplice of Satan’.
‘He acted like a real man and a worthy SON of his people! For a Chechen, nothing is more important and sacred than his religion’, stated Delimkhanov. ‘Adam is a worthy example for his peers, demonstrating a sincere desire to defend our faith and values!’
Chechnya’s Minister of Press and Information, Akhmed Dudayev, also came out in support of Adam Kadyrov while noting that he might be held legally accountable for attacking Zhuravel.
‘No one refuses or evades the punishment provided by law, including Adam Kadyrov — he is a citizen of the Russian Federation’, wrote Dudayev on Telegram. ‘But burning the Holy Quran and violating the religious feelings of more than 30 million Muslims in Russia and billions of Muslims worldwide is the most blasphemous crime that must be punished proportionally.’