27 named as victims in secret Chechen executions

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A small group of activists march a 20 meter Rainbow Flag 600 meters down the streets of Moscow, Russia
A small group of activists march a 20 meter Rainbow Flag 600 meters down the streets of Moscow, Russia

More human rights violations perpetrated by the regime of Chechnya’s president Ramzan Kadyrov have come to light. Novaya Gazeta, a newspaper in the region and very anti-Putin, published a list of 27 names they claim were killed in secret executions. The same news outlet brought to light the rounding up and persecution of gay people in Chechnya, where many of them are allegedly being held in concentration camps.

According to Novaya Gazeta, the mass arrests and executions in a largely Muslim region of Grozny, the country’s capital, started after the death of a policeman in mid-December. Detainees were executed without trial and their bodies dumped indiscriminately in various cemeteries, including Christian ones. The 27 victims named by the newspaper were all killed in one night though there is thought to be at least 56 people, or more, that may died the same night. The names came to light after a two-month investigation by the paper.

“Two months we had hoped for cooperation at the very beginning [of the investigation] to be effective,” the paper wrote in a statement. “Today it is obvious that the Investigative Committee of Russia is losing ground on this situation… that is why we publish the list of those who, according to our information, were victims of the worst possible extra judicial executions in Grozny. And now the investigation, which has a lack of living witnesses, will have to deal with the special witnesses. Because only the dead have nothing to fear in Chechnya.”