Russia’s Chechnya president interviewed on traditions, culture

Text of report by the website of pro-government Russian tabloid Komsomolskaya Pravda on 22 June

[Interview with Ramzan Kadyrov, head of Chechen Republic, by Aleksandr Gamov; in Groznyy, 21 June: "Ramzan Kadyrov: ‘I Will Not Let Young People From Moscow Kiss in Downtown Groznyy. Chechens in Moscow Must Not Engage in Free-For-All.’"]

Kadryov: "We are not bad, we are law-abiding people, we defended Russia’s integrity."

On Thursday 21 June the head of the Chechen Republic talked with journalists from local television channels in Groznyy and at the same time also answered our correspondent’s questions.

[Gamov] Ramzan Akhmatovich, you said recently that people who come originally from Chechnya, wherever they might be -in Moscow, in other Russian cities, or abroad -must respect the traditions and customs of the people who live there. What is being done to convey this statement of yours to those to whom it is addressed?

[Kadyrov] It was not a statement as such. Nor just words. It was a conversation I had with Adam Delimkhanov, a State Duma deputy from the Chechen Republic. This is the area he deals with for us. It is a question of specific steps and practical measures that are already being carried out in many Russian regions. Our people meet with young people and explain, if some people still do not understand, how to behave correctly.

In actual fact, whoever he might be -a Chechen, a Dargin, a Russian -he must, above all, abide by the law and not violate public order, and he must treat with respect the culture of the peoples who live in Moscow, or St Petersburg, or Groznyy.

This is an elementary issue, and I have always said and will repeat now that if young people arrive from Moscow, dance the waltz in downtown Groznyy, and kiss, who will allow them to? No one. I, above all, will not allow it. Because this is not to our way of thinking.

It is the same thing if Chechens live in Moscow and engage in a free-for-all: They must be called strictly to account.

Yesterday we were shown Chechens being detained on Kutuzovskiy [Prospekt, a major Moscow avenue]. They are thieves and lead the life of thieves. They take valuables and participate in set-tos. They have weapons on them. They already break the law. They were detained. But we say nothing about that.

We will not defend the person who fought in a parking lot or a restaurant. He is nobody. I do not respect him, and I absolutely do not understand him at all. If he did something or got up to something, he himself must answer for that. He has created a problem both for those guys who study and for the entire Chechen people.

Criminals must not be identified with any people: Bandits have no nationality. This is the simple and understandable truth.

But at the slightest provocation, if a fuss is raised in respect of a Chechen or someone from the Caucasus, the entire press is interested in comparing this criminal or lawbreaker at once: This is a Chechen, Kadyrov’s Chechen people.

When a Muscovite or someone from St Petersburg or Rostov commits a crime, they don’t say anything about him. They leave [Moscow Mayor] Sobyanin and do not touch the region’s other leader either. Straightway, if it is a Chechen, they compare the entire Chechen people. Chechens are so bad, they say.

We are not bad, we are law-abiding people, we defended Russia’s integrity.

When the OMON [Special-Purpose Police Detachment] enters a university hostel and starts humiliating students….

[Gamov] If you mean the students of the Maimonides University, why do you think they need to be protected?

[Kadyrov] An investigation is only taking place there now. Although it can already be said that they -the OMON guys -infringed their rights and insulted the young people, including girls. I will demand that they are punished according to the law. I will appeal on all levels. This cannot be forgiven or left like this.

Therefore all measures will be taken. Public organizations and Moscow attorneys -I wish to thank them -have themselves expressed the desire and are themselves defending them. We, too, will help and do everything possible.

Source: Komsomolskaya Pravda website, Moscow, in Russian 22 Jun 12


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