TODAY.AZ / Politics

Anzor Maskhadov: "Russia should understand it needs to reach agreement with Chechens"

05 June 2006 [14:30] - TODAY.AZ
Anzor Maskhadov, Aslan Maskhadov's son, gave interview to Azeri journalists.

"We have officially appealed to the Finnish government for political asylum. The official Helsinki is considering this appeal now and we are waiting for an answer. We are living in Azerbaijan for temporary period at present," the then president of the unrecognized Chechnya-Ichkeria Republic Aslan Maskhadov's son Anzor Maskhadov told APA in his exclusive interview.

He refuted the reports which were saying his intention to seek political asylum in another country not in Azerbaijan is due to official Baku's pressures.

"My family has never undergone pressure by the Azerbaijani authorities and we are obliged to your government for that. Russia, however, has always used pressure on me and my family and it was continued even after my father's death," Anzor Maskhadov said.

Mashadov expressed his satisfaction on the attitude of Azerbaijani authorities toward the Chechen refugees in the country.

"We are very satisfied with the Azerbaijani authorities’ attitude to our refugees, and I thank to the official Baku for this position. God appraises everyone for his good deals. As far as I know, there are several thousand Chechen refugees living in Azerbaijan now. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees has got the exact information about that. A number of organizations, including the UN High Commissioner for Refugees render assistance to Chechen refugees settled in Azerbaijan. However, these assistances are not enough. The refugees from Ichkeria are prosecuted and killed for their being Chechen. Therefore, we are concerned about the security of our compatriots fist of all," he underlined.

Mashadov also said that his appeal for handing over of his father’s body has not yet given any results.

"I have applied to many organizations to mediate in handing over my father’s body. They are trying to help us, and I hope we'll get positive answer soon. Russian authorities' position regarding Aslan Maskhadov is surprising. My father handed over a lot of Russian prisoners of war to their mothers, the Russia Soldiers' Mothers Committee can confirm this fact too. The Kremlin seems to be afraid of dead bodies. I cannot explain their attitude in another way. First, Russia rejected Aslan Maskhadov's calls to stop killing innocent people, and in February 2005 when my father declared the bilateral stop of military operations in Chechnya he was killed. It means Russia is interested in continuing of the war," Anzor underlined.

He also noted that as a Chechen, he supports the new president of Chechnya-Ichkeria Republic Abdulhalim Sadullayev, "I believe that his new nominations will be for the benefit of our people, who are suffering a lot of troubles, and they will follow the political course of Aslan Maskhadov, who advocated peaceful solution of this problem till the end of his life. This is a will made for all members of the Chechnya government."

Anzor Maskhadov also shared his forecasts on the further developments in Chechnya.

"My father once warned the presidents of the North Caucasus republics that their inactivity will lead to Kremlin’s taking the Caucasus to wars. He used to say that we should prevent Russia from starting war in Ichkeria, which can spread to the entire North Caucasus. Aslan Maskhadov warned about that in 1999. Therefore, those who started the war and those did not do anything to prevent this are held responsible for the events in the North Caucasus," he stressed.

Stating that he believes some forces in Kremlin are in favor of stopping the war, Maskhadov sent a message to sides, who are against peace, "Do think the persons who are sending their soldiers to kill Chechens are interested in stopping the war? Russian soldiers and mercenaries are burying alive men, burning and humiliating them in prisoner camps in Chechnya and do not hand over their dead bodies to their relatives, they are selling them instead. Chechens do not want war, we have not started this war, we were driven into the war. Every Chechen armed man wants to protect his people, mothers, sisters and their houses. Chechen fighters are defending their dignity, their houses and motherland. However, Russian authorities call them in different names, robbers, Islamists, fundamentalists or terrorists. Therefore, our President stated that Chechens will struggle for their rights in their native lands till the end. Russia should finally understand that it cannot defeat the Chechen people, it should come to an agreement with Chechens not jus to fight against them. The struggle will not stop until Kremlin understands it."

Anzor also said that Chechens like other peoples have right to be independent.

"All the peoples fought for their independence and each achieved it in different ways. These peoples celebrate their independence as great holiday every year. Our people have also right to gain independence. Peace will be established in Chechnya soon. One day we are sure to live happily in our home country without fearing aggression from the North. Chechens have never been so united as now. Let God almighty help us in solving this conflict," Anzor Mashkadov concluded.


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