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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Annals of "Pacified" Chechnya: Civic Leaders Dropping Like Flies


November 24th
:

An opposition party candidate who was shot by unidentified gunmen in the entryway of his apartment building in a southern Russian republic died Saturday of his wounds, his party said. Farid Babayev, a Yabloko party candidate in Russia's Dec. 2 parliamentary elections, was shot late Wednesday in Makhachkala, the capital of Dagestan. Doctors said he was shot four times, including at least once in the head. Yabloko leader Grigory Yavlinsky connected Babayev's death to his efforts to hold the authorities accountable for human rights abuses in Dagestan. The region is troubled by violence linked to the separatist conflict in neighboring Chechnya, a police crackdown on Islamic militancy and internal power struggles.

November 26th
:

A prominent regional figure and his wife were found shot dead in their home in the violence-plagued Dagestan province Monday, police said. The deaths of Nariman Aliyev and his wife came after an opposition candidate in Russia's Dec. 2 parliamentary elections was fatally shot in Dagestan's capital, Makhachkala. Aliyev, who long headed a state farm and was prominent in the winemaking business, was a former lawmaker and a member of Dagestan's Public Chamber, a body that consults with the government on policy. The province in Russia's troubled North Caucasus is troubled by violence linked to the separatist conflict in neighboring Chechnya, a police crackdown on Islamic militancy and internal power struggles.


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