16 April 2012, 23:00

Week in the Caucasus: review of main events of April 9-15

Summing up presidential election in South Ossetia; continuation of political hunger-strike in Astrakhan; statement of power agents of Stavropol Territory about prevention of terror acts before Easter; protest action against burning garbage dump in North Ossetia; detention and arrest of suspected attempters on President of Abkhazia, - look these and other events in the Caucasus in the review of the week of April 9-15, 2012, prepared by the "Caucasian Knot".

South Ossetia: Leonid Tibilov elected President at repeated election

As a result of the second round of voting at the repeated election of President of South Ossetia, held on April 8, Leonid Tibilov, the ex-head of the local KGB was elected to be the republic's leader with 56.12 percent of votes. His rival was the local Ombudsman David Sanakoev, who won 42.65 percent of votes. Mr Tibilov's inauguration is scheduled for April 19.

The Georgia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) has treated the South-Ossetian election as illegitimate. Experts from Georgia believe that the repeated election in South Ossetia was democratic; however, they reject its legitimacy. International observers from public organizations of the Russian Federation said that the presidential election in the republic was open and free, and met the respective international standards.

Astrakhan: political hunger strike in protest against election of Mayor continues; Shein prepares a lawsuit

On April 12, Oleg Shein, a member of the "Spravedlivaya Rossiya" (Fair Russia) Party and ex-candidate for the Mayor of Astrakhan, received from the Central Election Commission (CEC) all the video materials recorded from web-cameras installed at the city polling stations, where according to his data and information of his supporters Mikhail Stolyarov won the March 4 Mayor election as a result of mass falsifications. Mr Shein plans to use the video records to confirm violations admitted at over 120 polling stations; and on April 16 to file a lawsuit demanding to cancel the election totals.

On April 10, the Prosecutor's Office of the Astrakhan Region said that seven violations of the legislation had been revealed at the election. On April 12, Oleg Dupak, the General Public Prosecutor of the Astrakhan Region, stated that only four violations had been confirmed. On that very day, Vladimir Churov, Chairman of the Russia's CEC, noted that by then he saw no reasons for cancelling the election of the Astrakhan Mayor.

From March 15 on, in Astrakhan, supporters of Oleg Shein have been holding a political hunger strike in protest against the outcomes of the March 4 election of the Mayor; and on April 14 the action was supported by a group of activists of the protest movement, who arrived in the city, and Deputies of the Russian State Duma from the faction of the "Spravedlivaya Rossiya". Actions in support of the Astrakhan hunger-strikers were held in many cities of the country.

Stavropol Territory: power agents report about liquidation of nine militants and prevention of terror acts

At night of April 10, as a result of two special operations conducted in the cities of Mineralnye Vody and Achikulak, Neftekumsk District of the Stavropol Territory, nine militants were killed. According to power agents, they had been preparing terror acts for the upcoming religious and May holidays.

Law enforcers have reported that the militants, liquidated in Mineralnye Vody, where the counterterrorist operation (CTO) regime was introduced for the time of the special operation, had been shadowed for a long time; they were offered to surrender; however, they rendered armed resistance. After the operation, five submachine guns were found in the blocked apartment. The car of the militants liquidated in Achikulak contained two improvised explosive devices (IEDs). All the liquidated militants were members of the so-called 'Neftekumsk grouping" of militants, the Investigatory Committee of the Russian Federation (ICRF) reports.

North Ossetia: residents of Beslan demand to relocate garbage landfill

On April 10, in Beslan, local residents held a protest action near the dump, where the garbage that accumulated for years was on fire. In the course of the action, they blocked the way of garbage dumpers and demanded to move the landfill away from the city residential area.

On the following day, the head of the Pravoberezhny District Ruslan Daurov and the Mayor of Beslan Mairbek Khubaev met local residents and assured them that in the future the landfill would be relocated. According to their version, the self-government bodies of the Pravoberezhny District and the authorities of Beslan are looking for a site, where a new garbage landfill could be deployed.

Abkhazia: court arrests four suspects of attempting on Alexander Ankvab

On April 14, the Sukhumi Court satisfied the petition of the General Prosecutor's Office (GPO) of Abkhazia to arrest four suspects of committing an attempt on the republic's president Alexander Ankvab, committed on February 22 in the area of the township of Druzhba, Gudauta District. The arrest decision was passed in relation to Anzor Butba, Alkhas Khutaba, Timur Khutaba and Ramzi Khashig. The suspects were detained on April 12; it was reported then about six detainees; however, their data were not reported.

The GPO of Abkhazia said that the investigatory and operative actions aimed to identify other participants of the crime aimed against the constitutional order and state security continue.

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