Anzor Maskhadov: “Was My Father a Terrorist?”
Aftenposten, a Norvegian newspaper, published the letter of Anzor Maskhadov, a refugee in Norway and son of Aslan Maskhadov who was IIIrd President of Chechen Republic Ichkeria.
Here is the letter:
Bjørn Nistad comes in Aftenposten 7 and 15 April with a few accusations that I want to comment as they touch me, my father and all Chechens personally, history and memory of our dead relatives. He writes that Aslan Maskhadov, I and the other Chechens are terrorists.
I am proud that my father and I, could participate in the defense of our homeland, along with other Chechens.
Many countries have been occupied by other states, and that was why people have revolted. All nations have the right and duty to defend their country and people. I will draw a parallel to Norway, which was occupied in 1940 by the Nazis. Norwegians fought against them by joining the resistance. They were heroes, but the Nazis called them terrorists!
My father led the resistance against the occupiers. There is no evidence to claim that he was behind any terrorist acts. The attacks he led, was against the Russian military. Russian authorities and the media claim that, to destroy a tank in the war is a terrorist act. Is it perhaps the Bear Nistad mean?
He could contact with “Committee of Soldiers ‘Mothers of Russia” (The Russian Association of Soldiers’ Mothers) and ask how many prisoners were given back to Russia. Has anyone heard earlier in the history that parents, during a war, have sought and were asking their enemy to give their sons back to them?
The Russian mother were coming to us and were taking their sons. My father appealed to Russia to bury the bodies of the hundreds of dead in Grozny during the war, but this offer was denied by the Russian generals. Why he asked to bring an end of the war and start peace negotiations? Was my father a terrorist?
Why were all our relatives taken by the Russian security service (FSB), when my father agreed to go to Beslan to help the hostages there? I met the mothers of the slain children. They were not blaming my father, but Putin.
Suffer in the war
It is painful for me to see people suffering in the war, whether Chechens, Russians or others affected.
In January 2005, Maskhadov issued a decree to stop the fighting and offered the Kremlin to negotiate for an end of the bloodshed. But he was killed. Since that time many people have been killed, tortured or have disappeared. We could have save their lives if the Kremlin had decided to end of this war.
Maskhadov took part in the fighting, but he respected the laws of war, international agreements and human life. From that time Russia refuses to give his remains to relatives, so our family is still can’t bury him. In Russia he named as terrorist, a sentence that is neither based on facts or has been tried in the court.
27.04.2010 – Oslo
Note: After our publication about the letter, Anzor Maskhadov directly got in touch with our editorial staff and send us a better translation. We apoligize from our readers that there were a few mistakes on the first version of the letters.