Akhmed Zakayev’s Speech at the International Conference in Brussels
As we reported earlier, the Union of the Chechen Youth “Noxchycho” organized a 3 days international conference which was dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the Russian-Chechen war and the 10th anniversary of the death of the President of ChRI Aslan Maskhadov. Mr Akhmed Zakayev, Prime Minister of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria made the opening speech on March 7, 2015.
Here is the English translation Mr Zakayev’s speech:
Good afternoon, friends!
First of all, I would like to thank the organizers of our meeting today, and also all the participants. Thank you, friends!
The occasion for our meeting is an international conference dedicated to the twentieth anniversary of the start of a new colonial war by Russia against Chechenia and the tenth anniversary of the treacherous murder of Aslan Maskhadov, president of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.
In the past twenty years, the Chechens in the course of two wars have lost more than two hundred thousand people, of whom more than forty thousand were children. The methods and types of armaments employed by Russian forces in Chechenia are proof that the purpose of this war was not a “fight against international terrorism”, as claimed by Kremlin propaganda, but collective punishment of the Chechen people for their aspiration to freedom and independence.
Massive violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in the Chechen Republic have been well documented by many international non-governmental organizations.
In numerous reports to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe it has been noted that Russia, unleashing the war in Chechenia, was in violation of the Statute and Conventions of the Council of Europe. Russia has also violated Article 48 of the First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions, Article 3 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and Article 7 of the International Criminal Court.
Despite this, the heads of leading Western countries took to classifying the criminal war in Chechenia as “an internal affair of Russia”. After that, the entire international community began to view the Russo-Chechen conflict as Russia’s domestic problem. It is my profound conviction that this decision was not only politically mistaken, but also contrary to the fundamental principles of international law.
The problem now is that, for precisely this reason, crimes committed against the civilian population in Chechenia remain unpunished, and this encourages Russia to commit further aggressive actions.
Some people may believe that the Chechen issue has now a lower priority as a result of events in Ukraine, which directly affect the European Community’s geopolitical interests. I believe very strongly that the occupation of Georgian territories in 2008 and today’s events in Ukraine can be properly understood only in the context of events which began in the Chechen Republic twenty years ago.
The lack of any negative consequences as a result of the Russo-Chechen war strengthened President Putin’s regime and encouraged Russia to invade Georgia and Ukraine. Today, Putin’s Russia poses, without exaggeration, a serious threat to the security of the entire international community.
I am profoundly convinced that, only if Putin is called to account for the heinous crimes committed by the Russian military establishment against the Chechen people, will it be possible to halt Russia’s aggressive actions in the rest of Europe.
Crimes against humanity have no statute of limitations and, accordingly, I consider the establishment of an international commission of inquiry into war crimes and crimes against humanity in the Chechen Republic completely indispensable and more than timely.
The list of these crimes includes, of course, the assassination of President Aslan Maskhadov of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria.
On the tenth anniversary of the death of Aslan Maskhadov, we remember not only the heroic path he travelled in the service of his Fatherland, but also appreciate the political and moral legacy he left the Chechen people.
In the history of the Chechen people, we can assuredly rank the figure of Aslan Maskhadov on a par with Sheikh Mansour, Beybulat Taimiev, Hasan Israilov, Abdurahman Avtorhanov and Djohar Dudayev. The lives of Aslan and Djohar have much in common: a successful career in the armed forces of the USSR, return to the Republic in its most difficult and critical periods, three years of relatively peaceful presidency, and death in the wars against the Russian occupying forces.
The trust placed in the 1997 presidential elections in Aslan Maskhadov, Dudayev’s loyal comrade-in-arms, came from the whole of the Chechen people, and we can solemnly state that, for the first time since the days of Beybulat Taimiev, the Chechens had found a national leader in the fullest sense. Aslan Maskhadov was recognized as such not only by our people, not only by the international community, but also by our military and political opponent, Russia. It was a huge political achievement on the part of our people, and gave us a real opportunity to build a state governed under the rule of law.
However, old revolutionaries, dressing themselves up in the togas of “Islamic Ulims”, here too played their destructive role. It was they who became the new opposition to Aslan Maskhadov’s government. With their radical ideas, which were completely unrealizable at the time, they sowed new, even more dangerous dissension in Chechen society. These people forced Maskhadov to devote all his energies to trying to prevent a civil war.
Aslan Maskhadov was an authoritative and strong-willed leader who dedicated all his strength and willpower to averting internal fighting in Chechen society. Having failed to provoke civil war in the Republic, Russia was ultimately forced to embark on open aggression against the Chechen State.
Today, on the twentieth anniversary of the Russo-Chechen War, we must recognize that the only realistic way to achieve national independence and ensure the security of the Chechen people is to block any further experiments of various kinds at their expense. The Chechen people themselves must learn to recognize and resolutely combat ideological sabotage designed to undermine our efforts to liberate the Chechen State.
Among the national leaders to whom our land has given birth, Aslan Maskhadov occupies one of the most honourable places. He will go down in the history of the Chechen people not only as one of its greatest heroes, but also as one of its creators. A sense of history and of being part of history was very strong among the generation of Chechen fighters for our national freedom to which Aslan Maskhadov belonged.
That meant that, in addition to the qualities of a hero – selfless courage and tenacity – he had to demonstrate other qualities: self-possession, calculation, and the ability to find compromises. For the full eight years during which Aslan Maskhadov served as president of the CRI, he sought only peace for his people. Despite the fact that Maskhadov was a skilled military strategist and commander, he died not to achieve military success over the enemy, but to achieve an honourable peace with Russia, which he considered the most important goal.
The death of Aslan Maskhadov is comparable with the death of Sheikh Mansour: they both knowingly went to their deaths in the name of the ideals they stood for. Aslan Maskhadov had a choice: either to abandon his principles and enter an “honoured captivity”, to live enjoying full material prosperity, or to die without betraying the path of our glorious ancestors who gave their lives fighting for our freedom, without dishonouring the memory of his companions in the struggle. Aslan, like Sheikh Mansour, chose the latter course and worthily fulfilled his destiny, the destiny as a national leader, politician, warrior, and Chechen Qonakh. The memory of Aslan Maskhadov, a great son of Chechenia, will live forever in our hearts and in the history of the Chechen people.
Daala deeqal woila siilax noohchiin baeccha!
Allahu Akbar! Allahu Akbar! Allahu Akbar!
Thank you for your attention.
Brussels / 7 March 2015
Chairman of the Cabinet of Ministers of the ChRI
Here is Mr Zakayev’s original speech in Chechen language:
Noohchiin Respublika Ichkeerin Ministriin Kabineetin Kuegalhuo
Zakaev Axmadin doklad:
De dika hyliila xomsara duottagii!
Cqa doexxara barkal aala lu’ur dara tahanleera gullam wawshah toehnachaarna a, ishta massuo a deeqahuoshna a: barkal, Dela reza hila massaarna a. Wai cxana qhietarin baxana du h’ara konferenci, Rossiyas Noohchiin choenna doexala t’om buola barin 20 sho, Noohchiin Respublika Ichkeerin Prezident Maskhaadov Aslaan yaamarta wierin 10 sho a qhaacharna leerina yolu.
T’exxarchu 20 sharax dxa bahanachu shina t’am t’ex noohchiin qoomun yuqax shi bjee ezar saw adami daarash hilar, caareh shawza tqa ezar beerash a dolush. Rossiyan t’emahuosha Noohchiin choex lieliina qizallash, gerzash a toeshalla do cu t’emin jaalashuo «dynienin yuqara terorizmaca» t’om bar yaacara, kremalin propagandano qhiiqha ma darra, shien marshuo qhaiqhqa yar baxana dolush derrige noohchiin qoomana t’ex desh tajzar dar.
Adamiin baquonash a, dynienin yuqara adamallin baquonash a Noohchiin Respublika Ichkeeriex iesha yar qhaachamie dokumentashka dehkina du jeedaliin c’arah yoocu dynienin yuqara organizaaciesh.
Evropin Qhietashuonin Parlamentin Assambleyanuo duqqhaa a doklaadashkax bilgal dina du, Rossiyas Noohchiin chuox t’uom baaqqharca Evropin Qhietashuonin ustav a, konvenci a yuohiina hilar. Rossiyas ishta yuohiina Zheneevin konvenciina t’oehula t’e hottiina yolu Doexxara protokolin 48-gha statya, yi’oolagha Zheneevin konvencin 3-gha statya, MUS 7-gha statya.
Amma i derrigie a gush laettashex Maalh buziera yaqqhii pachxalqhiin kuegalhuosha Noohchiin chura yaamarta t’amah «Rossiyan choexara ghullaqh» olura. Cul t’aexa derrigie dynienuo a oersiin-noohchiin konflikt Rossiyan choexara ghullaqh sanna t’e leecir. So teshna wu i sacam politikiex niisa ca hilar sawnaha, dynienin yuqara baqhuoniin koerta principashna doexala boolush sacam hilarah. Ishta haarc bina politikin sacam baxana du, Noohchiin Respublikiex maersha naahana doexala dina zulamash zhuop diehaza disina hilar, tqa ocu xooluo Rossiyan qhin dxa a agressi lieluo duog da’iitar.
Cxacca boluchaarna muotta dala taam bu tahana noohchiin teema Ukra’iiniera hilamash xul yina, ysh niisa dxa Evropin xashtieh xaqha lush hilarie terra. Amma so teshna wu, 2008-chu sharax Gyrzhiin chuox hillarg a, tahana Ukra’iniex hylush laettash derg a dusta yish ca hilar, 20 sho xalha Noohchiin Respublikiex duola dellachynin kontekstex bien.
Oersiin-noohchiin t’om cxannie a kiepara baquonie uoziina, ya ur-attalla moraalin zie hilna Rossiyan t’aexaluo yoocush bisar baxana dolush ch’agh yelira prezident Putinin rezhim, cuo duog da’iitira Gyrzhii chu a, Ukra’ini chu a t’amca ghuorta. Tahana Putinin Rossiya, h’uma diestuor a doocush, baq bolu qhieram bu derrig dynienin maasharna.
So ch’awgha dog tieshna wu, oersiin eskarsha noohchiin qoomana t’iex yina inzarie qizallieh Putinie zhuop diehnii bien, Rossiyan qhin dxa yoluchu Evrope agressi saca lur yac aelna.
Adamallin doexal dina zulamash haan yaalarh dytash dac. Cundeela as laadamien hiilna ca jash inzarie mejnie looru Noohchiin respublikiex adamallina doexala dina t’emin zulamash tollu dynienin yuqara komissi qhuollar.
Cu zulamiin moghariex du yaamartaluonca Noohchiin Respublika Ichkeerin prezident Maskhaadov Aslaan wier a. I wiina 10 sho qhoochuchu diinax Aslaanas Daimehkin ghullaqh desh dxa baexna turpal nieq dagalaecna ca jash, wai cuo poliitikiex a, oezdingalliex a noohchiin qhoomana ditinachunna laqqhara maah haada bo.
Maskhaadov Aslaanin c’e noohchiin istooriex yoqqha hilarca mairra cxana moghara huottuo megar du Shaih Mansur, Taimin Biibuolat, Isra’iilov Xasan, Awtarhaanov Jabdurraxman, Dudaayev Zhawh’ar c’erashca. Aslaanin a, Zhawh’arin a daahariin nieqashkax tera doohursh duqqhaa a du: Soveetiin eskariex ka yaelna karyeera, uggar chuolhie a, zhoepallie a myriex respublikie yuha wierzar a, shimmuo a qhoqqha sharax miella a maasharie haan chox prezidentalla dxa qhiexar a, Rossiyan okkupantashna doexala bechu t’am t’ex dxa qhalhar a.
Dudaayev Zhawh’arin tieshamie naaquost hillachu Maskhaadov Aslaanina 1997-chu sharax prezidentin haarzhamashkax belna tiesham derrigie holqiera bara. Cundeela t’e ch’aghdiina aala megar du Taimin Biibuolatin zaamanax duena doexxara hilna noohchiin ishta derrigie a qoomuo haerzhina lider. Maskhaadov Aslaan ishta hilar qoobal dinarg wain qaam hilla ca jash, derrigie dynie a dara, poliitikex wain mostagh yolu Rossiya a yara. Iza wai qoomun boqqha poliitikin tuolam bara,maersha pachxalqh qhuolla baq yolu shans a yara.
H’ettie a noohciin qooma mostaghasha “jeelam neehin” oobaneh haerchina shain yaamarta jaalashuo qhoochush yira. Ysh bara ysh Maskhaadov Aslaani jeedalna kerla opoziici hilna dxa hittinarsh, t’eh dersh duecu, cu myrex yannie a qhoochush yalur yoocu ideyashca noohchiin qoomana yuqa qhieramie pitan qhoellinarsh. Ysh a bara ysh Aslaaniega shien berrigie nicqash, wain wezharsh yuqax t’om ca baaliita t’e xazhuo bieziitinarsh.
Maskhaadov Aslaan wara aamal a yolush, soobar a dolush liider. Massuo shien ghuora a sinin la’am a noohchiin qoomana yuqara pitanash dxa daaqqharna t’e xazhiira cuo, t’aaqqha Respublikex wezharsh yuqax bolu t’om baaqqha ca belcha Rossiyin ehh’arie Noohchiin pachxalqhana doexala agressi yan yiizira yuha a.
Tahana, Oersiin-Noohchiin t’om buola bella 20 sho qhaechnachu heenax wai qhietash hila dieza, qoomana maershuo yoxar yolush cxa’ bie nieq ca hilar, iza bu, shiena t’iex qhin bes-besara eksperimentash ca liela yaitar. Noohchiin qaam shaa jaama dieza Noohchiin pachxalqh maersha yaaqqha xoeguchu qinna bjostaniexa yolu ide’oloogin diversiesh yawza a, ysh haadamie sawcuo a.
Wain Dain mehkuo waina bellachu qoomun liidershna yuqax uggar laaramiecharieh cxa mettig dxa laecna wolu noohchiin istooriex koerta turpalhuo hilna ca jash, i istoori qhoellinachaareh cxa’ hilna wysar wolush wu Maskhaadov Aslaan. Istoorin aw ha’a dalar a, shaesh cynin deeqah hilarin qhietam a ch’awgha bara Maskhaadov Aslaanin cqoerah bolu maershuonin bjehuoshkax.
Shaa prezidentin darzhiex woluchu 8 sherin doohalliex beqqa maashar liihira cuo shien qoomana. T’emin baeccha a, gawza strateg a wolushiex Maskhaadov Aslaan mostagh t’ex t’emin tuolam baqqha ghiertash qhelhina wac, tqa shaa koerta tuolam looruchu, noohchieshna xaq dolu maashar doexa qhelhina wu.
Maskhaadov Aslaani qhalhar Shaih Mansuurin qhalharca dusta megar du: shii’e woedii hu’ush joozhalliina doexala wahana wu shiesh quesuchu ideeyan doexa. Maskhaadov Aslaani haarzham bara: shien principeh woehna “siilah yiisar” hilna waaha, massuo dynienin dikaneh marzuo a oecush, ya dxa qhalha, shain sinuosh ca qho’uosh maashar qiisina siilax dain nieqah ca wuuhush, shien naaquostii sii ca duozhuosh. Aslanas Shaih Mansuuruo sanna shoolagha derg haerzhina siilax cheqh baeqqhira shien daaharin nieq – qoomun liderin, politikin, bjehuochunin, noohchiin quonahchunin a nieq. Daa’imanna noohchiin qoomun istooriex a, wain degnashkax a wysar wu noohchiin qoomun siilax k’ant Maskhaadov Aslaan.
Daala deeqal woila siilax noohchiin baeccha!
Allah’u-Akbar, Allah’u-Akbar, Allah’u-Akbar!
Bryksel / 07.03.2015
Noohchiin Respublikin Ichkeerin ministriin kabineetin Kuegalhuo
Video of Mr Zakayev’s speech (in Chechen and Russian):