Magomed Khazbiev and His Brothers Arrested
The dissident website Ingushetiyaru.org has reported that on March 23rd, the well-known Ingush opposition leader Magomed Khazbiev and his two brothers were arrested at 1:45pm after a protest during the midday in Nazran.
According to the information, “Several dozen armed men in camouflage and masks raided our house, broke in, beat Magomed, his brothers and their father up, and drove off with Khazbiev and his brothers, Murad and Berd, with bags on their heads,” said Hadizha Khazbieva, Magomed’s sister.
Soon after the arrest, armed men again appeared at the Khazbiev family home. They said they were from the republican interior ministry and traffic police. The officers took Khazbiev’s car away which had been shot at earlier. When the family protested and demanded an official order for the confiscation, the police officers said they were acting on the direct orders of Ingushetia’s president, Yunusbek Yevkurov.
At around 5:00pm, an ambulance came to the Khazbiev family home. Another brother of Magomed, Ali was hospitalized with a head injury. The doctors said that he had fractured the frontal bone.
Khazbiev said that he and his brothers were being cruelly beaten and tortured at the police station. He suffered a serious head wound and was in serious condition. Also, an ambulance was called to the police station. However, the doctors did not give any medical reports, and doctors could not take them to the hospital although three of detainees are in serious condition and in need of medical care. It seems that the Khazbiev brothers will spend the night at the police station.
At the same time, human rights activists from Russia and Europe have contacted authorities in both Ingushetia and Moscow, expressing severe concern about the fate of Magomed Khazbiev and his brothers. Heidi Hautala, chair of the European Parliament’s Human Rights Subcommittee and deputy chair of the Finnish-Russian Civic Forum, expressed alarm at Khazbiev’s kidnap and arrest. In a statement, Ms Hautala said that the targeting of opposition activists in Ingushetia was simply unacceptable. “In a region full of grievances, accountability is an absolute precondition for security and safety,” she stated. She also sent an urgent letter to the Ombudsman of Ingushetia.
*Text was translated by Waynakh Online and edited by Michael Capobianco