Staunton, Mar. 21 – In recent weeks, Akhmed Zakayev, the leader of the Chechen Republic Ichkeria government in exile, has called for the renewal of the activities of the Confederation of Peoples of the Caucasus both to coordinate the drive to the recovery of independence of the region and serve as the basis of a new multi-national state there.
But the Committee on Ingush Independence founded by emigres as well earlier this year while supportive of the efforts of other peoples in the region to seek independence will not subordinate itself to Zakayev’s idea but instead go its own way (fortanga.org/2023/03/v-komitete-ingushskoj-nezavisimosti-zayavili-chto-ne-imeyut-otnosheniya-k-proektu-gorskoj-respubliki-predstavlennoj-zakaevym/).
Without the cooperation of the Ingush, the nationality most closely related to the Chechens but increasingly alienated to it by the actions of Ramzan Kadyrov in taking territory away from it, Zakayev’s idea, despite its historical precedents after 1917 and 1991 is likely to prove stillborn.
Indeed, the Chechen leader acknowledged as much when he spoke about the relations of the two Vainakh peoples in an interview last December (fortanga.org/2022/12/chechenczy-i-ingushi-v-budushhem-dolzhny-sozdat-edinoe-gosudarstvo-glava-kabmina-ichkerii-ahmed-zakaev/).
The Ingush demurral means that what is likely to happen in the North Caucasus at least in the coming months will be the articulation of multiple national independence movements, each of which will welcome the appearance of the others given their common goal of exit from the Russian empire but none of which will be willing to subordinate itself to a single organization.
Window on Eurasia — New Series