01 October 2012, 23:00
Week in the Caucasus: review of main events of September 24-30
Congress of Lak nationals and new information about the murder of Said Chirkeisky in Dagestan; happy end in the kidnapping of the eight-year-old girl in Rostov-on-Don; court ruling in Chechnya to ban screening the "Innocence of Muslims"; arrest of the head of Pension Fund in Vladikavkaz on suspicion of participation in machinations with maternal capital; scandal caused by a video about bribing a seat in the Azerbaijani parliament, - look these and other events in the Caucasus in the review of the week of September 24-30, 2012, prepared by the "Caucasian Knot".
Dagestan: Congress of Laks and new information on the murder of Said Chirkeisky
On September 28 in Makhachkala, representatives of the Lak nation held a congress and established the Dagestan regional organization "The Lak National Council". Amuchi Amutinov, a well-known local politician and the former head of the Pension Fund of Dagestan, was elected the Chairman of the National Council. The delegates to the congress discussed the current socio-political situation in the republic, including the problem of resettling the Laks to new residence, and stated that the steps in this sphere, taken by the republic's leadership, are not adequate.
Last week it became known that the grouping of shahid suicide bombers "Riyad-us Saliheen" had taken responsibility for triggering an explosion on August 28 in the house of the Sufi Sheikh Said Afandi (Said Chirkeisky) in the village of Chirkey, Buinaksk District of Dagestan; a certain Abdul-Malik made a respective statement about it in the video posted on the Internet. Law enforcers have reported that they are examining the information and take measures to find the author of the video report, whom they had identified as a certain Alexei Pashintsev, a resident of the Belgorod Region.
Rostov Region: locals help to find kidnapped eight-year-old girl
On September 27, in Rostov-on-Don, Dasha Popova, 8, who had been searched since September 19 by hundreds of rescuers, policemen and volunteers, was found alive. The fact that a man with a little girl looking like Dasha had drove to the marketplace "Almaz" in Rostov-on-Don was reported to the police by eyewitnesses. Alexander Maksimov, a resident of the city of Aksai, who is suspected of kidnapping the girl, was detained by policemen. According to investigators, he had kidnapped the girl with the aim to claim ransom.
On September 28, during his interrogation at the court, which had authorized his arrest, Maksimov said that he had not intended to kidnap the girl; however, he saw that she was well dressed and followed her. He said that he had planned to kill the child should her parents refused to pay the ransom. Now the girl is in hospital under the care of psychologists.
Chechnya: Grozny District Court bans demonstration of scandalous movie "Innocence of Muslims"
On September 27, the Lenin District Court of Grozny prohibited any demonstration of the movie "Innocence of Muslims", which has caused mass protest actions in many Muslim countries. It was also reported that the court had recognized the trailer as extremist; however, a source from the Russia's General Prosecutor's Office (GPO) has explained that the court had only passed a resolution on inadmissibility of its dissemination. The hearing on the GPO's claim to recognize the movie as extremist was appointed for October 1 at the Tver Court of Moscow.
The ban of the Lenin District Court of Grozny on distribution of the movie "Innocence of Muslims" is binding for the whole territory of Russia; however, according to lawyers, the mechanism and the timing of enforcing this decision raise many questions. On September 25 and 26, all the providers working in Chechnya blocked access - at the request of the Chechen Prosecutor's Office - to the YouTube because of the movie "Innocence of Muslims" posted there.
North Ossetia: the head of PFR in Vladikavkaz suspected of machinations with maternal capital
On September 25, Alexander Boraev, the head of the Vladikavkaz Branch of the Pension Fund of Russia (PFR), was detained in North Ossetia. He is suspected of abuse of power at satisfying the applications on disposal of their maternal capital, submitted by women from the capital of North Ossetia, in the amount of about 11 million roubles. On September 28, Boraev was placed under home arrest.
According to a duly informed source, bosses of a number of commercial companies also figure in the case of Boraev, who acted as a member of a grouping of people, including from Ingushetia and Kabardino-Balkaria, where earlier the heads of republic's branches of the PFR had been figurants of criminal cases.
Azerbaijan: scandal caused by video of bribing seat in parliament
On September 25, the YouTube posted an Azerbaijani video report, showing a talk of a man and a woman about a bribe to be paid for "election" an Azerbaijani MP at the 2005 elections. On September 27, in his video appeal posted on the Internet Elshad Abdullaev confirmed the authenticity of the video and explained that his interlocutors were the MP Gyulyar Akhmedova and her friend Sevindj Babaeva. Abdullaev asserts that after the appearance of the video he received threats of physical violence. Both women also confirmed the fact of conversation, but, according to their version, the video was edited, while in fact they had urged Abdullaev to return the money to the people defrauded by him.
Later, the Baku City Prosecutor's Office opened a criminal case under Article 178.3.2 (seizure of someone's property at a large scale by abuse of his/her trust) of the Criminal Code of Azerbaijan; and it became known that Sevindj Babaeva, Director of the Sabir Library, was dismissed, while the ruling party "Yeni Azerbaijan" has reported that Akhmedova was excluded from the party, where the "fraudulent actions of Gyulyar Akhmedova were regarded as a damage to the image of the ruling party of the country." Akhmedova has officially renounced her parliamentary mandate.