On the morning of 4 October in the capital of Ingushetia, Magas, about 10 thousand people gathered in a spontaneous demonstration against exchange areas neighbouring Chechnya. In total, the city lives approximately 8.7 thousand people, but in this day people have flocked there from around the region. The occasion was the approval in Parliament of Ingushetia exchange of territories. Calm people don’t get even by shooting in the air.
A decision on the exchange of territories was adopted on 26 September by the heads of Chechnya and Ingushetia, Ramzan Kadyrov and Yunus-Bek Yevkurov. In particular, Magas have to give the terrible part of the territory in the Nadterechny district of the Republic, and the response will give the same size piece of Malgobek district. In total exchange, in the framework of the agreement, subject to a few thousand acres of mountainous and wooded areas without human settlements.
Ingushetia is the smallest Republic in Russia, where almost all its borders are disputed. In addition, a significant part of it is covered with impassable forests and mountains, and the authorities are working hard to make these areas habitable. But this deals with Chechnya, which not the first year of implementing the program on development of the disputed areas. In particular, there holds the road, water and telephone connection.
In Ingush society, it is perceived very painful, but the more the situation is aggravated by the refusal of local authorities to carry out an open policy in respect of the territorial integrity of Ingushetia. For example, negotiations on the upcoming agreement until September 26, is actually kept secret, and the inhabitants of the Republic could settle for a rumor.
The result of Ingushetia were flooded with protests that don’t come off in over a month. For example, 26 Sep Magas moved to a state of siege. The city turned off the telephone, stop all traffic and sent troops of the national guard.
Similar security measures were used and 4 October, but now on the streets of the city came out not a few hundred people, and 10 thousand. As the roads in town were closed, people were coming to its borders from all over the country, and then walked. In addition, witnesses said that the Ingush OMON, flowing into the city protesters stopped a convoy of 5 cars, in which sat the military. The special forces didn’t work with a direct order of the interior Minister of Ingushetia Dmitry Cava. The scale of the protest was powerful, because only in Ingushetia is home to about 488 thousand.
To ward off the protesters from the building of Republican legislative Assembly, the security forces started shooting in the air, but even that did not help. Warn them, tried and Yevkurov, but when he came to the people, the ones pelted him with water bottles.
After several hours of clashes with police and guards to people left five deputies of the Parliament of Ingushetia, Ayup Ozdoyev, Advance Mamilov, Yevloyev Bay-Ali, Zelimkhan Osdev, and Ahmed Nakosteen, who said that the vote had failed. According to them, the “against” vote of 15 out of 24, was only 5 politicians, and other spoiled ballots. Even the head of the constitutional court of the Republic of Ayup Gagiev said that the deputies have no right to take the law, as such issues should be decided only in a referendum.
But Yevkurov apparently decided to go to the end. Instead of taking more time to reach out to people, he wrote in his Instagram that 17 of the 25 deputies voted for the ratification of the agreement on the border with Chechnya. And it is known that the deputies of the Chechen Parliament unanimously voted to change the boundaries. Meanwhile, residents of Ingushetia, Yevkurov urged to resign.
Experts of “MK” commented the situation and talked about possible development of events:
Ahmed yarlykapov, senior researcher at the Center for Caucasus and regional security MGIMO:
To say that the situation is explosive, to say nothing. Little Ingushetia, which has one-half a million people, it is very overpopulated Republic. And everything that touches the ground – very painful perceived by residents. In an attempt to solve the problem with Chechnya, Yevkurov hurriedly mobilized a significant part of the protest of the population. It is clear that in such a complex Republic and especially in such a complex issue as territorial, it was necessary to inform the public. Lack of information was a good ground for different kinds of manipulations that are not played into the hands of Yevkurov. Having solved one problem with the borders of Ingushetia received a lot of internal issues that need to be addressed. Of course, if the escalation continues to increase, the situation will have to intervene to the Federal center.
Vladimir Novikov, senior researcher of Institute socially-political researches of the black sea countries:
– In fact, this story, like the last story in Kabardino-Balkaria, said that in a sense, to the regions of the North Caucasus back 90 years. All driven once to a depth of conflicts that were not resolved in the period 2000 — early 2010, again turned out. These are land disputes within the republics with the participation of two or more of the titular Nations — KBR, KCR, Dagestan and so on. It turned out that there is no “status quo” on this issue. And now we can get a “Domino effect” when one conflict will generate from the chain of conflicts.
Let’s not forget about the claims of certain circles of the Ingush in the Prigorodny district of North Ossetia. In the 90-ies there was a very dangerous “hot spot”. In fact there was a war between the two republics. I’d like to be wrong, but I fear that the next argument will be Suburban district, and then the question arises: to what extent Moscow will be able to remain a referee and will she be able to keep the situation under control?
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