Participants of the rally "Our Strength is in Unity" in support of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov. Photo by Nikolai Petrov for the ‘Caucasian Knot’.

22 January 2016, 13:45

More than 57% of Chechen population attend rally in Grozny, MIA reports

Today, Grozny has held the rally "Our Strength is in Unity" in support of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA), the rally was attended by more than 800,000 people. In total, according to the latest statistics, Chechnya is home for about 1.4 million people.

Prior to the rally, the centre of Grozny was blocked. According to residents of Chechnya, the authorities obliged public employees and schoolchildren to attend the rally.

During the rally, the people were chanting: "Ramzan! Ramzan!" In their hands, they were holding the flags of Russia and Chechnya and posters with the slogans reading: "We support Russia!", "We support Ramzan Kadyrov!", and "Our Strength is in Unity!" The people were also holding the posters criticizing the non-systemic opposition and reading: "You need great shocks, and we need great Russia!" the RIA "Novosti" reports.

During the rally, the central square of Grozny and the surrounding territories were full of people, the RIA "Novosti" reports.

The rally in Grozny has ended without incidents, the website of the Chechen MIA reports.

Let us remind you that the idea to hold the rally appeared after human rights defenders, opposition leaders, the Russian Ombudsman, and intellectuals had sharply criticized the statement made by the Chechen leader on January 12. Ramzan Kadyrov said that the non-systemic opposition should be treated "as public enemies and traitors," who are trying to stagger the situation in Russia.

On January 18, Maxim Reznik, an MP from Saint Petersburg, filed to the General Prosecutor's Office an appeal with a request to verify the Ramzan Kadyrov's statement for extremism. On January 19 the HRC stated its intention to send Kadyrov's words about "people's enemies" to examination.

Full text of the article is available on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’.

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