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Law enforcement has now gotten invloved in the feud between Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov (left) and former Vostok battalion commander Sulim Yamadaev (right).
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Aug. 07, 2008
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Chechen Hero Now a Murderer
Law enforcement in Chechnya has declared a federal search for Sulim Yamadaev, Hero of Russia and former commander of the Vostok (East) special battalion, who was fired after a dispute with Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov. He is suspected of organizing the kidnapping and murder of a Chechen businessman in February 1998. Because the crime was committed when Yamadaev was a brigadier general in the armed forces of Ichkeria, the case is being investigated by civilian, rather than military, investigators.
The case against Yamadaev was announced yesterday by Chechen Interior Minister Ruslan Alkhanov in his weekly report to the republics president. He is a criminal, and a criminal should be punished for his actions. Its not important what his rank was, the persons name, what his achievements are or how many medals he has.

Yamadaev is accused of kidnapping and murdering 32-year-old Usman Batsaev, a resident of the village of Dzhalka, in Gudermes District. According to Batsaevs brothers Ali and Umar, the brothers returned to the village in January 1998 with equipment for producing macaroni. Their business was quite successful and, in the words of the oldest brother Ali attracted bandits to us from almost all over Chechnya. Field commanders also demanded money from them, but they had a powerful relative, Republic of Ichkeria interior minister Aidamir Abalaev, whose influence shielded them until the day Usman Batsaev and a companion were captured by three carloads of men in the middle of the village.

Yamadaev was considered to be in charge of Gudermes District at that time, and Usman Batsaevs brothers approached him for negotiations the next day. Yamadaev released the other man and promised to release Batsaev the next day. Then they were told that Usman had run away on his own. Later, the brothers say, Yamadaev sent an intermediary, who said that he would help return Usman for $100,000. In April 2000, Yamadaev told the Batsaev brothers where Usmans grave was located. They identified his burned body from dental work.

The Batsaev brothers contacted law enforcement agencies in Chechnya about their brothers murder in the spring of this year, after Kadyrov had a falling out with Sulim Yamadaevs younger brother Badrudin. Sources in the Russian Defense Ministry say that one factor in the turn in Sulim Yamadaevs fortunes may be the replacement of main commander of the Russian infantry Alexey Maslov, who may be appointed Russian representative to NATO. Maslov personally managed the Vostok battalion.

Sulim Yamadaev moved to Moscow after quarreling with Kadyrov. Other cases involving serious crimes have been initiated against him by the military. His brother Ruslan Yamadaev, a former member of the State Duma, told Kommersant that Sulim is still in Moscow and investigators know where to find him.


All the Article in Russian as of Aug. 07, 2008

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