15 June 2010, 23:00
Week in the Caucasus: review of main events of June 7-13
Capture of militants' leader named Magas; hot debates on the role of the Russian language in Armenia, - look up these and other events in the review of the week of June 7-13, 2010, in the Caucasian regions prepared by the "Caucasian Knot".
Basaev's associate captured
One of the leaders of North-Caucasian militants Ali Taziev, also known as Magomed (Ahmed) Evloev under the nickname of Magas, was detained on June 9 in a special operation.
He was charged under part 1, Article 208 ("Organization of illegal armed formation"), Article 279 ("Armed rebellion") and part 3, Article 222 ("Illegal arms circulation"). According to the investigation, in 2004 Taziev organized, together with Shamil Basaev, attack on Nazran; he was also involved in the recent attempt on President of Ingushetia Yunus-Bek Evkurov.
The Lefortovo District Court sanctioned Taziev's arrest till August 9.
The start of Magas' custody at SIZO (pre-trial prison) "Lefortovo" was already was marked by a funny incident. Evgenia Khasis, a figurant in the murder case of lawyer Stanislav Markelov, refused to take prison food in protest against being kept in the same facility with Ali Taziev.
Armed conflicts in Northern Caucasus continue
The authorities of Chechnya report about a great success of their power agents. In the course of an operation conducted on June 8 by a special subdivision of federal forces in the high-mountainous Vedeno District of Chechnya, 10 supposed members of the armed underground were liquidated. This was reported by the Military Commandant's Office of the republic. One of them was identified as Yasir Amarat, a native of Jordan, also known as "Amir Yasir".
On that very day, in the course of a skirmish in the Nazran District of Ingushetia two persons were killed, who, under the version of power agents, were active participants of illegal armed formations.
New items arrive from various "hot" points of Northern Caucasus about losses among employees of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA).
On June 13, unidentified persons shelled a militia post in the Dagestan city of Derbent: two militiamen were lost and one more wounded. Another militiaman was killed, when an unidentified criminal opened fire in Khasavyurt. In this incident two occasional passers-by were heavily wounded.
On June 12, an explosive device was triggered near the Interior Division in Kaspiisk. Two persons were lost and three more wounded. On June 10, in Bolshoi Bredikhin village, Kizlyar District of Dagestan, an employee of the Kizlyar ROVD (District Interior Division) was shot dead.
Besides, Northern Caucasus saw a number of attacks on militia cars. On June 12, in Ekazhevo village, Nazran District of Ingushetia, unidentified persons shelled from a machine gun a car with two OMON fighters of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ingushetia who were returning from their on duty shift. One of the fighters managed to jump out of the car, by breaking his legs, and opened a response fire on the attackers. On June 9 in Makhachkala, two militiamen were contused at the explosion of their patrol car. On the same day fire was opened on a militia car in the city of Khasavyurt, and a MIA employee was shot dead.
Last week messages arrived about victims of attacks among peaceful residents.
On June 10, in Kichi-Gamli village, Sergokalin District of Dagestan, a group of armed persons executed a peaceful resident, presumably, a hunter. On June 8, in the Untsukul District of this republic, magistrate judge Abdurakhman Gamzatov was killed in his own house.
On June 7 in Makhachkala, an explosive device was triggered near the Tsumadin wholesale marketplace, and four civilians suffered. On that very day in Nazran, a car with a local resident inside was shelled. The victim died in place. Another person was shot dead near the city marketplace.
Besides, in Dagestan, a series of attacks were registered on the entities engaged in selling strong drinks.
On June 13, unidentified persons threw a grenade into a gastronome in Makhachkala. Under preliminary data, one person was injured. A day before, at a similar incident in a pub four persons suffered: two were wounded also two contused. On June 9 in Makhachkala, criminals threw a grenade into a cafe: one visitor was hospitalized.
Foreign-language schools are in focus of public conflict in Armenia
From June 7 on, Armenia sees protest actions held at the building of the National Assembly of Armenia and organized by the initiative group "We are against opening foreign-language schools". Thus, on June 10, the opponents of opening of foreign-language schools in the territory of the country held a march and a rally. A protest action also passed at the building of the government, where a session of the National Assembly was held.
The reason of people's indignation was in amendments to the Laws "On the Language" and "On General Education": reduction of the number of foreign-language schools from 15 down to 9. It is offered to introduce foreign-language training only in senior classes, starting from form 10. Only two international schools will hold training starting from form 7. One of these two schools - the Russian one - will be built in Dilizhan for the money of Russian businessman Ruben Vardanyan, while the other school - the Thai one - will be supposedly located in Dzhermuk.
It is also offered to set a limit on the number of pupils in these schools: no more than 650 pupils in each.
It is planned to pass the bill with respective amendments already at the autumn session of the parliament of Armenia.