The militants, who were liquidated on Tuesday during the battle in Grozny, entered Russia from abroad. The killed terrorists are known to have honed their combat skills in Syria. Security experts draw attention: this happened shortly after the appearance of reports about the transfer of Islamists from Syria by Turkey to the Karabakh conflict zone.
On Tuesday morning, in the Oktyabrsky district of Grozny, four militants were eliminated and settled in a private house. Weapons, communications equipment, and ammunition were removed from the battlefield. During the operation, two officers of the National Guard were killed (initially three were reported), another policeman was injured.
A little later, the head of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, named the neutralized militants in his telegram channel. Magomed Tsuraev, Magomed Magomedov, Ramzan Murtazaliev and Mayrbek Imamurzaev returned from abroad to Russia to commit terrorist acts, the head of the republic said. As Kadyrov explained, the terrorists were listed in the operational base "for a long time and were on the wanted list." “Recently these shaitans have been on the run outside of Russia, hiding in Syria and other countries. Now, having received an order from their western sponsors, they returned and decided to carry out a number of terrorist attacks, ”the head of the republic explained.
“The dogs of hell have forgotten that we restored peace and order in the Chechen Republic not so that the bandits disturb the peace of the citizens. Anyone who threatens stability in the region will be immediately destroyed. So it was and will be from now on, ”Kadyrov stressed. He assured that the situation both in Grozny and in the region "is generally stable and calm." “Restrictive measures have not been introduced. Free movement. All services are operating normally. The security forces worked as professionally, harmoniously and quietly as possible, ”the head of Chechnya said.
However, in the opinion of the security forces, the threat of terrorist attacks remains in the Oktyabrsky district of the Chechen capital. As TASS was told in the operational headquarters for the special operation, law enforcement officers are collecting proactive information and are taking measures to strengthen the protection of crowded places in Grozny. A criminal case was initiated on the encroachment on the life of law enforcement officers.
“The death of two law enforcement officers of the republic is a big loss. This proves that trained special forces officers should deal with the problems of exterminating militants, ”Sergei Goncharov, president of the Association of Veterans of the Anti-Terror Unit“ Alpha ”, told the VZGLYAD newspaper. He recalled that there is a training center for special forces in Chechnya. According to the expert, the decision to use the National Guard fighters in the capture of the terrorists, and not the special forces, was spontaneous. “The National Guard and those law enforcement officers who were right there, having received the information, decided to eliminate the terrorists themselves,” Goncharov suggested.
Since last year, 60 militants have been killed in the North Caucasus, and 19 terrorist attacks have been prevented. According to the National Anti-Terrorism Committee (NAC), since the beginning of 2019, 36 terrorist crimes have been prevented in this region, 144 terrorist suspects and 220 of their accomplices have been detained, the activities of 35 secret cells have been suppressed. At the same time, the NAC noted that "the leaders of international terrorist organizations are striving to spread the ideology of terrorism and continue to try to recruit their supporters, using, among other things, social networks and messengers."
The group that was neutralized in Grozny, apparently, was recruited relatively long ago and managed to gain combat experience abroad. The question of how the "dogs of hell" entered the territory of Russia remains open.
The key version can be considered as illegal crossing the Georgian-Russian or Azerbaijan-Russian border along mountain paths,
suggested in a comment to the newspaper VZGLYAD, Major General of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, retired Vladimir Vorozhtsov. “Despite all the efforts of the Russian border guards, the highlands are still not completely blocked,” the source said. - Moreover, the terrorists traditionally have very strong corruption ties on the Georgian side. It is possible to cross the border with forged documents and other criminal schemes. However, in this case, the militants most likely entered Chechnya due to the peculiarities of the mountainous terrain. "
“It is no secret that Georgian border guards have repeatedly allowed significant groups of militants into the territory of the Chechen Republic,” Vorozhtsov said. The most famous such case was the breakthrough of Ruslan Gelayev's gang in 2002 from the Pankisi Gorge through Ingushetia to Chechnya. The captured jihadists reported that the Georgian border guards helped them to enter Russian territory.
It is worth noting that in 2016 the Tbilisi-based newspaper Rezonansi reported that the Islamic State * had created a “special forces brigade” with the aim of carrying out terrorist attacks in Europe, Central Asia and the Russian North Caucasus. At the same time, Georgia was assigned the role of a transit country.
Experts, however, do not rule out that the militants with a high degree of probability could penetrate from the territory of Azerbaijan, and then go through the border mountainous regions of Dagestan to Chechnya. “I am one hundred percent sure that these militants arrived through Azerbaijan,” Semyon Bagdasarov, director of the Center for the Study of the Middle East and Central Asia, told the VZGLYAD newspaper. He recalled reports about the transfer of militants from groups operating in Northern Syria to the conflict zone in Nagorno-Karabakh.
As you know, a week ago, the director of the Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) Sergei Naryshkin listed jihadist structures, whose representatives appeared in the combat zone in Karabakh. These are the pro-Turkish groups "Sultan Murad Division" and "Firkat al-Hamza" banned in Russia and the much more famous and also banned "Jabhat al-Nusra".
We also remind that at the beginning of the month, French President Emmanuel Macron announced the transfer of more than 300 militants from Aleppo, associated with the Islamic State, to Karabakh through Turkey. By the way, it was in Aleppo that the IS "Minister of War" *, an ethnic Chechen Kist Tarkhan Batirashvili, who was liquidated in 2016, operated.
“It is asserted that now there is no“ Nusra ”, they say, it is called differently. But any representative of the special services and just an informed person knows that the name does not change anything, and it is the fighters of al-Nusra and ISIS *, reorganized by Turkey, who have arrived in Azerbaijan and are now infiltrating into our territory, ”Bagdasarov said.
“Some of these bandits believed that terrorist acts could be carried out on the territory of Russia, which was smashing ISIS in Syria,” Goncharov said in turn. But, the Alpha veteran added, only investigative measures can prove this version of revenge against the Russians for Syria.
Ivan Abakumov, Irina Yarovaya, Mikhail Moshkin
* An organization in respect of which the court adopted a final decision on the liquidation or prohibition of activities on the grounds provided for by the Federal Law "On Counteracting Extremist Activities"