Pro-Russian Authorities Confirm Burial Ban at Cemeteries
The Russian newspaper Izvestia has reported that the pro-Kremlin regime’s so-called Islamic administration in the Russian occupied Chechen Republic of Ichkeria has confirmed a ban on the burial of Chechen mujahedeen in local cemeteries.
According to the information, Sultan Mirzayev, Mufti of the pro-Russian regime, gave an interview to the Russian newspaper Izvestia and confirmed a ban from the pro-Kremlin regime’s so-called “Spiritual Administration of Muslims in Chechnya” on the burial of Chechen mujahedeen in Chechen cemeteries.
“The criminals, who are guilty of the death of Muslims and other atrocities, cannot be buried in the usual cemeteries next to ordinary people. Religious and traditional ceremonies must not be held for them because they have gone against Allah. They simply died as dogs and do not deserve the usual burial. The bodies of terrorists and murderers can only be buried outside of cemeteries. Mullahs and kadis from all areas and settlements of the republic are strictly prohibited from participating in or organizing funeral rites in respect to such persons,” said Mirzayev. He also confirmed that the rule is not new but has actually existed for several years.
On the other hand, Ramzan Kadyrov’s press secretary, Alvi Karimov did not deny the report and added that if the “Spiritual Administration” says that this is how it must be, then is nothing for him to add.
In fact, it is known that such practices are common in the Russian occupied Chechen Republic of Ichkeria, but so far it has not been confirmed by the pro-Kremlin regime’s representatives. For example, in August of this year, residents of the village of Elistanzhi within the Vedeno district of Chechnya could not visit relatives of a slain Chechen mujahed, Albert Osupov, to give their condolences. According to the Osupov family, on August 18, they were not allowed to open the gate to their house. Albert Osupov’s body, like other fighters who have been killed throughout the uneven battle with Russian soldiers and their local collaborators, was not given to his family.
“It’s good that Mirzayev did not ask for more. It is a fact that the bodies of Chechen mujahedeen who defend our homeland against Russian invaders have not been given to their families and the families are not allowed to hold memorial services unless the so-called ‘spiritual administration’s allows. We have all known this for a long time,” said Salakh T, a Chechen citizen.
“Our elders say that true Chechens never cause harm to other Chechens; real courage is in forgiveness,” said another Chechen civilian.
“This summer, they killed Zaurbek and Ibragim Avdorkhanov in Ingushetia and their bodies were brought first to the village of Alleroy within the Kurchaloy district and shown to people around security. Then their bodies were taken away, not being allowed burial, even outside the cemetery. As far as I know the corpses were taken to the forest and burned. After all these things, how can these people speak about religion?” said a human rights defender who wishes to remain anonymous.
Ingush human rights lawyer Musa Pliyev said that he did not hear of such things happening in Ingushetia, but perhaps a few times it has occurred. “If this happens in Chechnya, it means that the same trend will soon spread to other republics in the region. You can’t explain such a method in religious terms; it isn’t human behavior. You can’t be at war with the dead,” said Pliyev.
*Text was written by Waynakh Online and edited by Michael Capobianco