Russia’s Investigative Committee says a military court has sentenced a man to 25 years in prison for being a member of a group led by late Chechen separatist field commander Shamil Basayev that attacked another North Caucasus region, Daghestan.
The Investigative Committee said on December 1 that Russia’s Southern Military Court in the city of Rostov-on-Don had sentenced Shamil Umakhanov after finding him guilty of being a member of an illegal armed group, armed mutiny, and attempted murder of law enforcement officers.
In early August 1999, militants led by Basayev entered Daghestan from neighboring Chechnya, which had de facto independence after a 1996 peace deal ended a devastating war between federal troops and Chechen separatist forces.
After Basayev's group announced what it said was the creation of an independent state in Daghestan, federal troops entered Chechnya on October 1, launching a second war in the mostly Muslim region.
The campaign restored Moscow's control over Chechnya and helped Vladimir Putin, who was Russian prime minister at the time and still relatively little known, gain prominence and popularity.
Between 1994 and 2006, Basayev led several major attacks by Chechen insurgents against federal troops and claimed responsibility for or was blamed for a number of terrorist attacks in Russia’s North Caucasus, which includes Chechnya and several other regions.
Once the most-wanted man in Russia, Basayev was killed in an explosion in 2006 in Ingushetia, a region bordering Chechnya.