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Were Abducted Ingush Recruited By FSB?


The website kavkazcenter.com, which serves to publicize the views of the radical Islamic resistance in the North Caucasus, on October 14 posted an unsubstantiated but plausible explanation for the abductions of 10 young Ingush men in Moscow last month. One of the abducted, Magomed Khamkhoyev, managed to escape from the luxury mansion where he was held and questioned for several days.

Khamkhoyev was reportedly questioned by his captors about his work with Federal Security Service (FSB) Colonel Alikhan Kalimatov, who was reportedly investigating a series of abductions of young Ingush men when he was gunned down outside a roadside cafe in Ingushetia in September 2007.

According to kavkazcenter.com, Kalimatov had been tasked by the FSB with recruiting young Ingush militants, allegedly to launch attacks in neighboring North Ossetia on Ossetians. The real aim in creating that clandestine Ingush unit was, however, to target the Islamic resistance operating in Ingushetia, according to kavkaz-uzel.ru. Most young Ingush approached by Kalimatov turned down his offer, but some of the 10 who disappeared in Moscow, including Khamkhoyev, accepted.

Kalimatov's unit was based in Armkhi, in the extreme southwest of Ingushetia close to the border with North Ossetia, and was headed by Zelimkhan Batayev, who according to kavkazcenter com established an independent group of fighters in the wake of the October-November 1992 fighting between Ingush and Ossetians over the disputed Prigorodny Raion in order to seek revenge on the Ossetians. Batayev reportedly died in mysterious circumstances last year: it is not clear whether his death preceded or followed that of Kalimatov.

-- Liz Fuller

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Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at transmission+rferl.org

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